Can frequent alcohol use affect child custody?
When parents in Colorado decide to separate or divorce, the need to share parental rights and responsibilities is often their biggest concern. No one wants to end up excluded from their children’s lives or relegated to brief visits.
The good news for most parents preparing for divorce or custody hearings in Colorado is that judges generally try to keep both parents actively involved with the children when dividing parental rights and responsibilities in family court. However, what a judge decides to do depends on what they think will be in the best interests of the children in the family.
Sometimes, the behavior of one of the adults can lead to uneven parenting time arrangements. For example, depending on the nature of the challenges that your family is facing, you may be wondering if frequent alcohol consumption by a parent play might play a role in your child custody proceedings.
Issues with alcohol can affect parenting
Accusations of substance abuse are relatively common in custody proceedings. Colorado family law judges typically understand that alcohol and illegal drugs can diminish someone’s parenting ability. They could pass out and become unresponsive in an emergency where their children need help.
Alcohol is a disinhibitor, which may mean that people say or do things that cause distress or injury to others while intoxicated. Frequently over-consuming alcohol also sets a very poor example for the children in the family and increases their risk of substance abuse.
Of course, concerns about alcoholism might influence how a judge divides parenting time if they believe the children are at risk. However, the parent claiming that there is an alcohol issue will typically need evidence other than their personal testimony to support those allegations.
Financial records showing that someone spends hundreds of dollars a month at the bar, video footage posted to social media of someone drunk while out with friends and even police reports or hospital records could help validate someone’s claim that alcohol abuse might make shared custody arrangements dangerous for their children.
The right approach is key in custody disputes
Bringing an unsubstantiated claim against coherence to manipulate the courts could harm a parent’s chance of getting custody just like an actual substance abuse disorder could. Those expecting a contentious custody process should approach the matter carefully and with proper support.
The ways in which someone presents their claims to the court can make a big difference in the likelihood that their arguments will be successful. Learning more about the fact that can influence the allocation of parental responsibilities will make it easier for parents to prepare adequately for custody proceedings with the help of an experienced attorney.