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Emergency Child Custody

Do you believe that your co-parent poses an imminent threat to your children's safety?

With the help of a lawyer, you can file for emergency restrictions on their parenting time and parental contact.  

The Dadvocates stand by fathers throughout Colorado in maintaining their children's safety and quality of life...

Take Action 

If you believe your children are in immediate danger, call the police right away. However, if your children are in your care or in an otherwise safe environment, but you believe future contact with the other parent would place them in imminent danger, call The Dadvocates now. Our Colorado firm can file an emergency motion with the court and, in most cases, schedule a hearing to take place within the next 24 hours. With our help, an emergency restriction on child custody (also called emergency temporary custody) can be granted immediately after the hearing.

"The Dadvocates Were Terrific."


Roshanda Gavin


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After years of fighting for visitation rights, my brother was not only awarded those rights but joint legal custody as well. Samara and her team are very knowledgeable, persistent, and professional. If you need legal representation that will fight for you and get the job done this team is who I recommend. You won’t be disappointed. Our family is forever grateful for all the hard work and dedication from this firm. Thanks again and many blessings upon your family for bridging the gap in ours.

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James Harris


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Dadvocates has an excellent team of lawyers that are caring, compassionate, and work hard to ensure that the divorce process is a smooth one! I would really recommend the firm to anyone considering a divorce. My brother’s divorce could not have gone as smooth with anyone but The Dadvocates.

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Is My Child in Imminent Danger?

Emergency restrictions are solely intended to avoid an imminent danger. Judges can penalize parents for filing what are found to be baseless or frivolous requests for emergency restrictions (also called emergency temporary custody). Therefore, before you take action of any kind, it is important to know what the courts would consider an imminent danger to your child. Our attorneys are here to give you the advice you need to protect your children's best interests. The following are examples of when - and when not - to file for emergency restrictions on child custody:

Grounds for Emergency Custody

  • Physical or sexual abuse
  • Domestic violence
  • Substance abuse (such as drinking to the point of incapacitation during parenting time)
  • Mental health concerns
  • Parental kidnapping (or a threat to do so)

Not Grounds for Emergency Custody

  • You don't approve of people the other parent socializes with   
  • Your co-parent used illegal drugs at a concert during your parenting time
  • The other parent refuses to help your child with their homework during their parenting time

In some cases, taking less urgent measures to change the parenting plan or make other adjustments to the parameters of the child custody agreement may be a wiser move on your part. Our attorneys are ready to help you make all the right decisions when it comes to maintaining your children's welfare.

Long-Term Neglect or Abuse Versus Imminent DangerLittle girl looking out window

In the simplest terms, demonstrating that your child is in imminent danger means that the evidence must be recent. On the other hand, if there is evidence of long-term abuse or neglect that has become apparent over a longer period of time, the matter requires a different approach.

One very important reason for making this distinction is avoiding having sanctions placed against you if the court determines that filing for emergency restrictions on child custody was "frivolous, substantially groundless, or substantially vexatious." For example, you could be ordered to pay the other parent's court fees and, in some cases, have restrictions placed on your parenting time. Note that having a motion denied will not automatically result in penalties against you.

Whether you feel your child is in imminent danger or has been suffering long-term abuse or neglect, our attorneys are ready to fight for the safety and wellbeing of your family. The importance of speaking with our Colorado firm in order to determine the best course of action in your case cannot be overstated. 

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Avoid Making Serious Mistakes Brash Decisions Can Have Devastating Consequences

We understand that as a father, there is no worse feeling than believing that your child may be in danger. You will naturally want to do whatever it takes to take your children out of harm's way, but it is crucial to take calculated actions in order to avoid making legal trouble for yourself that could ultimately jeopardize your access to your children. If you believe that your co-parent is placing your children in danger:

Think Twice before Violating Parenting Time Agreements

If you violate a court-sanctioned parenting time agreement (by keeping your child in your care when they should legally be in the care of the other parent, for example), you may be charged with parental kidnapping unless you can prove that at the time, it was the only way to protect your child. The penalties for this crime can include years behind bars and thousands of dollars in fines. Again, if you believe your child is in immediate danger, you should call the police. However, if you have just become aware of what you perceive to be an imminent danger due to your co-parent's access to your child under your child custody agreement, reach out to us now. We can help you take the right steps and possibly secure emergency restrictions on child custody within 24 hours.

Reconsider Seeking Safety Across State Lines

Many child custody agreements have specifications regarding crossing state lines with the child. Similar to violations of visitation agreements, the court will make exceptions when it can be demonstrated that leaving the state with the child was absolutely necessary in order to protect the child's safety. But jail time, steep fines, and restricted custody may be imposed if the court does not agree that you made the right decision in leaving Colorado with your child.

Talk to a Lawyer as Soon as You Possibly Can

You're focused on the health and happiness of your child. So are we, and we believe a very important part of that mission is making sure your kids have as much time with you as possible. Although the right course of action may seem crystal clear in the moment, the truth is that a hasty decision on your part could very possibly marginalize your role in your child's life. The attorneys of the Dadvocates are here to make sure you do the right thing every step of the way.

The custody attorneys of The Dadvocates serve the entire state of Colorado. They are here to help you understand the court system's perception of your case and guide you in the very best direction when it comes to safeguarding your children.

The Courts Can Act Fast

In Colorado, an emergency restrictions hearing can often be scheduled within 24 hours of filing

Reach Out Now

The family law attorneys at The Dadvocates exclusively help men and fathers throughout the state of Colorado make the right choices when it comes to protecting their children. From custody to child support and other family law matters, we are equipped to help you.

Ours is a statewide firm that is available to meet in person, by phone, or online to provide the crucial legal advice you need. We have offices in cities in all corners of Colorado to serve you:

  • Aspen
  • Boulder
  • Breckenridge
  • Broomfield
  • Colorado Springs / El Paso County
  • Crested Butte
  • Durango
  • Glenwood Springs
  • Grand Junction
  • Gunnison
  • Pueblo
  • Steamboat Springs
  • Vail

You can request a meeting with a family law attorney using our online contact form, but if your child is in imminent danger, we strongly recommend that you call:

(720) 749-2876

"They Look Out for Your Best Interests."


Charlotte Anthony


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Hands down the best law firm out there. They stuck through a very difficult divorce and child custody case with me. I had battled for years. I would recommend anyone of the attorney's in this firm. They look out for your best interests and have your back the entire time. Thank you again Dadvocates for absolutely everything."

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jimmie hoffman


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Thanks for all of your help in getting my divorce resolved. Your help and assistance was very valuable in assuring that everything was taken care of in the best manner. I appreciated it as my life went through the transition.

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Dedicated to Dads

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Our firm is exclusively dedicated to helping men and fathers in matters of child custody and other family law issues.


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Today, it is easier than ever to collect and preserve pertinent evidence. We recommend photographing everything you possibly can, and making copies of all the evidence you collect. This evidence should be uploaded to a cloud service, stored on an external hard drive, or even just e-mailed to yourself. These measures can help make certain that custody is adjusted in a way that protects your kids.

Put The Dadvocates in Your Corner

The thought of your child's safety being compromised in any way is terrifying, but achieving the very best resolution requires rational thought and an acute understanding of custody and other family law matters in Colorado. Our firm is here to make sure dads and their kids navigate this incredibly difficult child custody matter in a way that ultimately fosters the safe, nurturing environment your parenting plan should provide.

The Dadvocates serve men throughout the Centennial State, and we are here to help you protect what matters most to you. To book a consultation, you can either reach out to us online or call us directly:

(720) 749-2876

"I can sleep knowing she is with me and safe..."

"Samera and her team were wonderful, I was probably the difficult one at times given the stress I was under worrying about my granddaughter and her well being.  The firm was very professional and I am grateful for the hard work and dedication put into my case that ultimately worked in my favor.  I now have legal guardianship of my granddaughter and I can sleep knowing she is with me and safe, she is happy and where she needs to be and it would not have happened without the support of S&H Law.  Samera missed her own daughters field trip to be present for the hearing that unexpectedly went into the next day, she made it happen and didn't blink an eye to make sure she was there for me and my grandchild. Dantha Rountree - 5-Star Google Review, 2019

What Happens When I File for Emergency Restrictions?

Once you reach out to The Dadvocates, if we believe you have grounds for requesting emergency restrictions on child custody, we will take immediate action to protect the safety of your children:


Our attorneys will file a motion for an emergency restriction of your co-parent's access to your children.

First Hearing

In Colorado, an emergency restrictions hearing can usually be scheduled within 24 hours of filing. During the hearing, the judge will decide whether to grant a temporary restriction. These restrictions can be imposed right away to temporarily change custody.

Second Hearing

If the emergency restrictions are granted, the court will hold a second hearing within 14 days to analyze the merits of your claims. Based on their findings, custody orders may be permanently changed in a way that the court determines will better maintain the safety of your child.

Custody Is Steered by a Child's Best Interests

What If My Co-Parent Lives Out of State? The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act

Even if you and your co-parent don't reside in the same state, you have a right to file for emergency custody under the ​Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act. Under this law, a parent can file for emergency custody in a state that is not the child's home state (the state where the child has resided with a parent or guardian for at least 182 days before a child custody proceeding). The Dadvocates are here to put custody to work for your child's safety, regardless of whether both you and your co-parent reside in Colorado.

If you believe your children are in immediate danger, call the police right away. However, if your children are in your care or in an otherwise safe environment, but you believe future contact with your co-parent would place them in imminent danger, call The Dadovcates now.

Let's Get Started

Do you feel certain that your co-parent, their level of parental commitment, living situation, or other factors related to custody are placing your child in imminent danger? If so, you need a dedicated legal advocate who can recommend a course of action that not only helps eliminate that danger, but also avoids placing you in danger of legal backlash. 

We have helped many dads in your same situation over the years. Our attorneys understand the gravity of these cases and the lifelong impact that their outcomes can have. Let us show you the way to a safer, happier future for you and your kids. 

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We can help you through custody matters of any degree of urgency.

Act with Caution

Violating custody agreements without real danger to your child can result in fines and jail time

Frequently Asked Questions About Emergency Child Custody in Colorado

Family law in Colorado can be complex. In the heat of the moment, you may feel certain that you are taking action in the best interests of your children when in reality, you may be making legal missteps that could affect your life and your access to your children for many years to come. You have everything to gain by consulting a lawyer with your questions. Below, we have provided answers to frequently asked questions regarding emergency restrictions. These are intended to give you a frame of reference, but should not be considered a substitute for consulting a custody attorney:

My child is in my co-parent's care right now, and I believe he is in immediate danger. What should I do?

Call the police. Attempting to take matters into your own hands by personally taking your child out of your co-parent's care could have very serious legal ramifications that could ultimately compromise your own access to your children.

My co-parent allows my child to stay out as late as she wants, even on school nights. Should I file for an emergency custody change?

No. Although this parenting choice may not serve your child's best interests, it will not likely be considered an imminent danger by the courts. However, you are not powerless when it comes to situations like these. For example, the circumstances of this situation could be indicative of neglect. Talk to our family law attorneys about taking the right steps toward achieving custody changes that better protect your child's safety.

I truly believe that violating the terms of our custody agreement is the best way to protect my child's safety right now. Am I within my rights?

If you decide to keep your child in your care when they are supposed to be with your co-parent, or if you feel you need to violate your custody agreement by leaving the state with your child, it is ultimately up to the courts to determine if these actions were warranted. It is important to understand that if the courts do not feel these actions were necessary to maintain your child's safety, you could face serious criminal charges. The best way to protect your child's safety, as well as your custody rights, is to call the police if you feel there is an immediate danger. Next, consult our attorneys as soon as you can.

How soon can I get an emergency custody restriction granted?

With our help, the courts can schedule an emergency hearing within 24 hours and grant an emergency restriction immediately afterward. The courts will schedule a second hearing within 14 days to determine if a permanent change in custody should be enforced.

Reach out now to speak with our attorneys:


If you feel you need to file for emergency custody, there are two reasons why enlisting the help of an attorney is so strongly recommended:

  • With the help of an attorney, you have a much greater chance of achieving the changes needed to protect your child's safety. Our family law attorneys can present an evidence-based case for changing the amount of time your child spends with your co-parent as well as the circumstances under which that parenting time occurs. Child custody is steered by your child's best interests and we are prepared to demonstrate why changes in child custody are necessary.
  • You make yourself legally vulnerable when you file for emergency restrictions. You do not want to be perceived as someone who is simply acting maliciously toward their co-parent or making unfounded claims to achieve changes in child custody. An attorney can help you protect your child's best interests while making sure you don't suffer any unwanted consequences, such as restrictions on your parenting time or having to pay your co-parent's legal fees.
Family law in Colorado can be complex. In the heat of the moment, you may feel certain that you are taking action in the best interests of your children when in reality, you may be making legal missteps that could affect your life and your access to your children for many years to come. You have everything to gain by consulting a lawyer with your questions.
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The Dadvocates

The Dadvocates are the only lawyers exclusively focused on protecting the rights of fathers. Our attorneys have received awards and prestigious recognitions from Super Lawyers, Avvo, and the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys. We assist dads in a variety of legal matters, including:

You can request a consultation with our firm by filling out our online form or calling (720) 749-2876.

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