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Fort Collins Family Law Attorney

Genuine and Empathetic Legal Advocacy for Your Weld County Family Matters

Looking ahead at a divorce? Facing a custody battle? Wondering what a Colorado PCDM does? Shufflebarger Law Office, P.C. can answer all your family law questions and help you navigate your unique situation. Attorney Jeremy Shufflebarger’s primary goal as a lawyer is to help people. He is an empathetic advocate who will commit to extensive research on all the laws relevant to your case and the circumstances surrounding your legal matter. He is also a powerful litigator who knows how to assert his clients’ rights and interests effectively.

Our firm handles the following family law cases:

Let Attorney Shufflebarger help you and your family today. Contact us online to get started.

Getting a Divorce in Colorado

Colorado is a no-fault divorce state, which means spouses can file for divorce without any concrete reason that triggered it (e.g., adultery, misconduct). The “irretrievable breakdown” of the marriage, or the fact that there is no chance for the couples to get along and reconcile, is enough to petition for divorce.

The main requirement for divorce is the residency requirement. To file in Colorado, either spouse must have been a resident of the state for at least 90 days prior to filing a petition. These rules for divorce apply to all marriages, including same-sex couples. 

One of the most complex parts of a divorce case is settling the marital disputes. If you are in the process of a divorce, expect to negotiate or litigate decisions on the following:

  • child custody
  • child support
  • property division
  • alimony

Parenting Coordinator Decision Makers

Another family law tool that you may utilize to resolve unyielding disputes, particularly those pertaining to your children, is a parenting coordinator/decision maker (PCDM). Parenting coordination and decision making aim to resolve child-related disputes between parents. The “parenting coordinator” is a neutral third party who helps disputing parents reach an agreement on the care of their children. Some issues that may be negotiated with the assistance of a parenting coordinator are parenting time and child support.

The “decision maker” is an individual who has the authority to make legally binding decisions to resolve disputes between the parents. These decisions may address the implementation of child-related orders, such as:

  • disputed parental decisions (e.g., co-parenting plans);
  • how much parenting time each is allowed;
  • whether one parent should pay child support.

Before making final decisions, the decision maker facilitates negotiation between the parents as they sit in the discussion, so they also play the role of the parenting coordinator (hence PCDM).

When the parents cannot reach their own agreement under the supervision of the decision maker, though, the decision maker may make a final, binding decision to be filed with the court that typically lasts a minimum of 2 years. 

If you are currently dealing with a family law issue in Fort Collins, CO, reach out to Shufflebarger Law Office, P.C. for legal support. We genuinely want to help you and your family resolve your disputes as efficiently as possible. From divorce to child custody to mediation, let us handle your legal issues today.

Schedule an initial consultation online to get started.

Resolving Disputes in Mediation

One way to resolve your divorce is to pursue mediation. Mediation is a dispute resolution process where a third-party mediator will help the disputing parties reach their own agreement. The mediator has no decision-making power, and their sole purpose is to foster effective discussion and communication for both parties to settle their disputes without having to go to trial.

Note that Colorado courts may refer any family case for mediation or other dispute resolution programs unless one of the parties is a victim of physical or psychological abuse by the other party and states that they are unwilling to enter mediation. The court may also exempt from referral any case in which a party files with the court, within 5 days of a referral order, a motion objecting to mediation and demonstrating compelling reasons mediation should not be ordered, such as that the costs of mediation would be too burdensome or that previous attempts to resolve issues were not successful. 

At the conclusion of mediation, the mediator will write up the final settlement agreement to submit for court approval. If the parties address all their disputes, they do not need to proceed to court if the judge approves their agreement. If the parties only reach an agreement on some or none of the disputes, the remaining issues must be settled in trial. 

Attorney Shufflebarger is both deeply knowledgeable about mediation law and a good trial lawyer, so he can help your case in both situations, especially if your case does proceed to trial.

  • “Jeremy has been my attorney for over 7 years now, dealing with my cases ranging from Family, divorce, custody, relocation and more. Each and every case has come out in my favor, he updates me regularly and is 100%...” - Amy G.
  • “I can’t express enough how much I loved working with Jeremy!” - Dev S.
  • “Great service, very professional and dedicated.” - John S.
    Jeremy Shufflebarger Founding Attorney
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    Attorney Jeremy Shufflebarger comes from a vast family of Colorado natives. After moving around the United States, he settled in Fort Collins, Colorado. Jeremy is a former judicial clerk for the Larimer County District Court in Colorado and the Laramie County District Court in Wyoming.

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    Contact our firm today

    We Provide Compassionate and Efficient Representation for a Range of Family Law Issues

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