How Can a DUI Charge Affect Child Custody?
Fighting to hold on to your rights to custody of your children can be a complex process, but it will become even more difficult if you’re facing charges of driving under the influence (DUI).
Alcohol- or drug-related charges will reflect very poorly on you in divorce court. In fact, alcohol abuse is an issue that will frequently come up in child custody disputes, meaning a DUI charge will absolutely be used as evidence of alcohol abuse and your unfitness to serve as a parent to your children.
Therefore, if you find yourself charged with a DUI while going through a divorce, your best hope to hold on to custody of your children is to find a great criminal defense attorney to handle your DUI case and either get the charges dropped or bring down those charges.
Is a DUI always a deal breaker in custody cases?
While a DUI charge will absolutely become a factor in your custody case, it is not always necessarily a complete deal breaker in terms of you having any custody of your children. If, for example, it is your only criminal offense and you have no previous history of drug or alcohol abuse, you might be able to hold on to custody of your children.
In addition, it is unlikely a DUI conviction will affect your ability to maintain legal custody — that is, your ability to make decisions on behalf of your children. DUI charges are much more likely to affect physical custody — the right to have your child in your physical care at your home.
For more information on the factors courts will consider in determining child custody, speak with an experienced Long Island divorce attorney at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates.