Child and Family Investigator and Child Legal Representative

I look at the big picture to see the ripple effects of the decisions made today on the life you will live in the future.

Kristen McLaughlin Tarrin

A CFI is a court appointed investigator that works with everyone involved in the case including the children. A CLR is a court appointed advocate for the best interest of the child or children.

As a CFI and CLR, my focus is the best interest of the children and my job is to prepare a report (CFI only) for the court concerning parental responsibility such as parenting time and decision making rolls. I also testify in court when needed.

Do You Need a CFI or CLR for Your Family Law Case?

Not all cases need a CFI or CLR. Some may need both. You need a CFI or CLR if there is a lot of conflict between the parents or there is suspected mistreatment of the children. CFIs and CLRs are trained to identify neglect, abuse, and other forms of mistreatment.

Kristen Tarrin’s CV: Click Here

Our Practice Areas

Eagle County, Summit County, Lake County, Clear Creek County, Mesa County, Garfield County, La Plata County, Archuleta County, Denver County, Arapahoe County, Broomfield County, Boulder County, Gilpin County, Jefferson County, Douglas County, and more in Colorado.


Court appointed child and family investigator.


Child Legal Representative, representing the Best Interest of the Child.

Kristen is on the CFI list for appointments in these Colorado Judicial Districts:

How Do I Get a CFI for my Family Law Case?

You (or your attorney) can file a motion with the court to have a CFI appointed. You must send the opposing party (or their attorney) a copy of the motion.

The CFI has to be court appointed and the judge can disagree that one is needed in your case.

You can request a specific CFI. You should contact the CFI first to make sure they are available and to ask any question you have before making the request for he specific CFI.

How is a Child and Family Investigation Conducted?

How the investigation is conducted depends on the scope of the court order appointing the CFI, but it usually follows these steps:

  • Meet with each parent separately (or possibly together if there are no protection orders) to discover their concerns and desired outcome.
  • Visit each home to consider the living situation and observe the children in each home environment.
  • Interview the children privately if they are old enough.
  • Interview people who know the parents in their capacity as a parent and people that know the child separately from the parent. This could include relatives, neighbors, friends, coaches, teachers, therapist, or school counselors.
Kids Jumping on furniture
  • Prepare report of information gathered that takes into consideration the wishes or each parent and the children but also how the law applies in the case. The report is only recommendations. The court has the final decision as to how the recommendation are followed.

A CFI is not there as a therapist or to make determinations about a parents mental health. They can suggest that a parent consider a mental health evaluation or recommend that the court order further investigation with a licensed mental health professional.

It is Kristen’s sincere hope that her CFI Report will assist parents in settling their parenting disputes. Kristen’s philosophy of being a CFI is to assist the parties in doing what is best for the child or children and not to foster the flames of litigation.