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John Palmer Waters
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John Waters’s Answers

126 total


  • Can I file a response to a temporary protection order?

    My ex-girlfriend & mother of my kids filed a restraining order against me, claiming I have threatened to assault them. I have never been abusive in any way to my children, and they love visiting (I recently gained joint custody of them, after her...

    John’s Answer

    A restraining order is now a Protection Order (positive spin?). Anyway, a TPO is an ex-parte proceeding and, in my eyes, it's a very low bar for the protected party to show there's danger. HOWEVER, be prepared like heck to fight making the TPO permanent. That's your fight. The protection order is a cheap way for some people to back-door their way into modifying parenting time. Be prepared.

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  • My son was arrested for DV yesterday. He is in jail and waiting to see a judge. When can a lawyer get involved on his behalf?

    It had been less than 24 hrs now. He had an argument on a date and the woman called the police when he did not take her home immediately. Now he is facing 2nd degree kidnapping and Domestic Violence.

    John’s Answer

    Any time. Depending upon the jurisdiction, there maybe a first advisement with a set bond amount, like in Denver. Then at the second advisement, usually a few days later, the lawyer can actually argue for a lower bond, like a Personal Recognizance bond. The key though is that your son must NOT talk about his case with anyone until he hires a lawyer. He MUST remain silent and just ride out the process, as painful as it is. The cops will trick him into talking so that they'll go "easy" on him; when in fact the opposite is true. Many of us offer free consultations. So, take your time, interview many lawyers and then hire one you and your son respect and trust. Good luck, John.

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  • What steps should i take to ensure my children's father can't keep my kids past time agreed upon or pick them up from relatives

    no written agreements. Just established paternity after HE doubted. I have taken care of my children since birth and they have always lived with me. The father has not had any overnight stays independently in 2 and a half years, since he has le...

    John’s Answer

    Short answer is you can't. Long answer is file an APR and duke it out in court. However, remember that the court will want the father to participate in the children's lives, absent any endangerment issues. So, is this worth the emotional/financial cost associated with a custody battle? If so, then you may want to consult a lawyer. Many of us offer a free consultation. Good luck, John

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  • If your arrested on drug charges can they make you do UA's when you have plead not guilty and haven't went to court yet?

    My sons UA was positive for pot if it's now legal how come they put a warrant out for this when he hasn't even been found guilty on the original charges yet?

    John’s Answer

    It's probably a condition of pre-trial/probation dept. that requires no drugs or alcohol pending the outcome of the case. Even though your son hasn't pled, he's still under the jurisdiction of the Court system, which can require certain liberty constraints. There was a proposed bill in Colorado that would keep medical marijuana safe from the Court's control, but I think it died. Good luck, John

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  • Can I file an amendment to parenting plan in with uncontested final orders hearing already set re: intro of new relationships?

    I don't necessarily want to alter anything already in the parenting plan...I just want to add the stipulation that we should both wait at least 3 months after the divorce is final to introduce any girlfriend/boyfriend.

    John’s Answer

    Yes, you can; and yes that's a good idea. Children have enough going on with their lives that introducing new partners is very confusing and unsettling on top of school, friends, extracurricular activities. It sounds like you've thought this out for the best interest of your children, which is always a win, win. The judge will be happy with this stipulation. Good luck, John

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  • Can my felony be expunged

    I am 56 years old, when I was 19 yrs old, I stole some tires and received a $500 fine and 3 years probation and a felony. I have never been in any kind of trouble since then and want to know if this can be expunged and what do I need to do?

    John’s Answer

    I'm just trying to think outside the box, here, so bear with me. I agree that you can't seal it, but could you petition the Colorado Supreme Court and/or Gov. Hick to pardon the felony and make it so that it's completely removed from your criminal record? I had a client who had her 2nd degree murder conviction pardoned in Utah, and it's gone. I wasn't her lawyer in Utah, but I believe that she had a hearing in front of the Utah Supreme Court and the pardon was approved with the blessing of the Governor and DA's. Good luck, John

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  • What do you if the other person's finances have changed before the final hearing?

    We don't have a final hearing yet for allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time. Yet the other party went from unemployed to having a job after the sworn financial statements were written. Is there a way to ask the court to ask th...

    John’s Answer

    Under CRCP 16.2, they have a continuing duty to update their financials; if the party won't then file a Motion to Compel and ask for atty's fees. Good luck, John

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  • CPS asked me if I do a UA and I complied. tested positive but have proof of prescription. they're asking me to do a hair test...

    CPS came to my house after allegations of drug use I voluntarily took the UA I tested positive but I have a prescription which I provided to them. I figured that would clear me but now they're asking that i do a hair follicle Drug test do I have t...

    John’s Answer

    I agree with both responding attorneys. I just would like to add that DHS is a sledge-hammer not an ice pick. They bludgeon their way through families' lives and usually wreck havoc. They're the bull in the china shop. So, what does a parent do when they're caught up in the DHS net? The parent can comply with DHS and do EVERYTHING they want. Or, the parent can fight. If you fight, plead not guilty at the adjudicatory phase of the case and set it for a jury trial. Meanwhile, however, your child cannot remain with you. You must fill out a Relative Affidavit that gives DHS some placement options pending your trial. You sound frustrated, but you DO have options. It's just at this point neither the DHS "machine" nor the Court system will greet you with open arms if you set it for trial. In my experience, even if you lose at trial, the Treatment Plan will be the same with the eventual goal of returning the child home. Finally, I attended a CLE about drug use (medical or recreational), and the experts agreed that as long as you're not under the influence while solely caring for your child then it's okay in most family law courts. However, in juvenile courts where DHS has filed a D&N, drugs are off the table, period. Good luck, John

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  • Can you get a court appointed attorney if your family bails you out and you are indigent

    I have not worked in last 5 years and have filed for Social Security disability

    John’s Answer

    Yes, but remember the Public Defender's Office, while very good, handle a very, high-volume of cases per attorney. My suggestion is that when one's appointed, make an appointment and sit down and introduce yourself OUTSIDE court. Be on time. Take a shower! Dress up. Be proactive. Be polite. Don't leave multiple vm's. Then, once you've established rapport with them, make another appointment to review your discovery together. Stay on top of YOUR case. Then if you have a shot at winning, plead not guilty at your arraignment and fight like hell. Good luck, John

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  • What crimes are felonys?

    Are any of these charges felonys? Reckless endangerment Unlawful possession of controlled substance Assault in 2nd degree Criminal mischief

    John’s Answer

    Yes! If you're being charged for these, please don't talk to the cops and instead consult with an attorney, many of us offer a free consultation. Good luck, John

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