Law Offices of Richard K. Isles
Contact Us Now

Clouding child custody with substance abuse

Perhaps your spouse's addiction is the driving reason behind your decision to file for divorce. You may have concluded that your spouse's substance abuse is creating a toxic environment for you and the children. However, the children may not really understand the situation, and you know they will want to spend time with their other parent after the divorce is final.

Child custody issues are complicated in most divorces, but adding a drug or alcohol dependency to the mix reveals how delicately the courts must balance the best interests of the children. Modern family courts recognize the value of a child's relationship with both parents, but they also must have the child's safety as a primary concern.

The immediate dangers of a chemically dependent parent

You may have reached the limit of dealing with the effects of your spouse's addiction. Perhaps you constantly struggle to pay the bills because your spouse can't keep a job or frequently spends the family's money on his or her drug of choice. You may also already feel some resentment from your children who may perceive you as the one who is breaking up the family or trying to keep them away from their other parent. However, you know the potential dangers an addicted parent may present:

  • Having your children in the car while driving under the influence
  • Bringing the children into situations that are unsafe
  • Behaving violently or negligently while intoxicated
  • Being abusive to you or the children
  • Setting an example of substance abuse in front of your children

As much as you understand the importance of your children having a relationship with their other parent, you also know that it is your responsibility to protect their welfare at all times. If your former spouse cannot provide that protection, he or she may have to forfeit visitation or require restrictions on custody rights.

Finding support when you feel alone in the fight

If your former spouse is able to maintain sobriety and is successful in treatment programs, the court may agree to loosening the restrictions placed on visitation. While it may be emotionally taxing, you will likely need to remain vigilant until the children are grown for their protection.

Discussing your situation with a family law attorney will provide you with solid advice as you approach your child custody hearing. You can be assured of compassionate and straightforward counsel for dealing with the legal issues your spouse's addiction presents. An attorney will help you defend your rights and protect the best interests of your children.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For a Response

Learn How We Can Help

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

g plus g plus g plus

Riverside Office
10367 Hole Avenue
Riverside, CA 92505

Phone: 951-643-3829
Riverside Family Law Office Map

Corona Office
1101 California Avenue
Suite 207
Corona, CA 92881

Phone: 951-643-3829
Corona Family Law Office Map

Temecula Office
43533 Ridge Park Drive
Suite J
Temecula, CA 92590

Phone: 951-643-3829
Temecula Family Law Office Map