Few things in life are more heart-wrenching than facing the prospect of losing your children. After all, your relationship with your kids is vitally important for both you and the young ones in your family. If you are facing a child custody matter, you may worry about losing the ability to see, nurture and enjoy your children.

Officially called “parental responsibilities,” child custody in Colorado depends on the best interests of the children involved. As such, when preparing for your custody case, you likely want to do what you can to secure a healthy, safe and effective environment for your kids.

There are certain actions that can harm a parent’s chance to obtain or retain parenting responsibilities. Here are three common ways to lose child custody in the Centennial State or to convince a judge that your child’s other parent should not have custody.

  • Alcohol or substance abuse: As you know, alcohol and drug abuse can take a tremendous toll on families. If your ex is not clean and sober, a judge may be convinced that he or she does not have the ability to care for your kids. Further, if your ex’s home contains illegal substances, this may be seen as an inability to provide a safe environment for the children.
  • Housing insecurity: Housing costs are expensive in the Denver-metro area. If your child’s other parent cannot afford housing or lives in an unstable environment, this may be used as an argument against granting custody.
  • Not obeying court orders: To ensure children have the right environment, judges often ask parents to complete certain tasks. For example, a judge may want you and your ex to attend parenting or financial classes. Disobeying court orders or directives can mean risking losing a custody case.

Raising good kids can be challenging for any parent. The home environment you or your ex create for your children will affect your child custody battle. Don’t leave the outcome to chance. Let a legal professional to help you obtain a custody agreement or parenting plan that is best for your children.