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Brandt v. Brandt

Supreme Court of Colorado
268 P.3d 406 (Colo. 2012)


Facts

George Brandt (plaintiff) and Christine Brandt (defendant) were divorced in Maryland and had joint legal custody of their child, C.B., with Christine awarded primary physical custody. George was transferred by the United States Army (Army) to Colorado, where he remained until retirement. Christine was ordered to serve at a Texas base, but maintained her Maryland home, continued to have a Maryland driver’s license, and paid Maryland state taxes. During Christine’s deployment in Iraq, C.B. lived with George for one year. Afterward, Christine was ordered by the Army to return to Maryland. George filed a petition in Colorado to register the Maryland custody order and to request that the court assume jurisdiction to modify custody of C.B. The Colorado trial court registered the Maryland order and assumed custody jurisdiction because none of the parties currently resided in Maryland. Christine appealed and returned with C.B. to Maryland as ordered. George then filed a petition in the Colorado court to modify parenting time, together with an emergency motion for writs of habeas corpus and assistance, seeking the return of C.B. from Christine. The Colorado court issued both writs, and C.B. was returned to George. Christine appealed and requested a telephone conference between the Maryland and Colorado judges and attorneys. During the teleconference, the two judges disagreed over which state had jurisdiction of the matter under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA). The Supreme Court of Colorado granted Christine’s petition for review.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Hobbs, J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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