How your Spouse's Drug Abuse May Alter Your Divorce Process

Speak to a Nearby Dissolution Attorney

Countless people in the United States battle with drug addiction, including the use of alcohol, controlled substances, and prescription medicines. Oftentimes, those who are combating drug addiction can create significant problems within their own families, which might trigger divorce. If you are divorcing a husband or wife with a chemical dependency, you must be aware of the way in which this problem may influence custody of your children and assets division. This article explains how a wife or husband's drug abuse can influence your tactics throughout a dissolution.

Applying for Dissolution Based on Addiction

At present, all U.S. states allow spouses to apply for a divorce based on no-fault premises, including detachment or "irreconcilable differences," indicating you and your spouse can not co-habitate any further. With a no-fault dissolution, you do not have to demonstrate that your wife or husband did anything to induce the break up.

In a lot of U.S. states, however, in some states, including Texas and New York, you can still file for dissolution based on fault grounds, like infidelity, cruel treatment, and chemical or alcohol abuse. In the areas that still support these fault-based divorces, you'll always be able to call for a divorce based upon your wife or husband's drug dependence.

Even in the states where you can just file for a no-fault dissolution, such as California and Florida, you can still introduce proof of your husband or wife's drug abuse during the case as it may relate to child custody and other issues in the divorce.

The sober wife or husband normally has an upper hand in settlements and often times has the ability to acquire a beneficial settlement without having to openly try the case in court.

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How addiction Influences The Children's Custody

One area in which chemical abuse weighs heavily is in your children's custody. While modest alcohol consumption probably will not influence a custody determination, courts will strongly take into account any drug abuse trouble that impacts parenting capability. Usually, a mom or dad with a chemical abuse issue is much less likely to acquire custody of the children.

Courts have a number of choices to safeguard kids from a father or mother's addiction problems during visitation times. The court might order that there be no over night visiting. The court could likewise obligate a professional to monitor all visitation periods. Courts frequently mandate that addicted mom or dads undergo regular alcohol and drug screens, go to Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous meetings, or receive substance addiction therapy. Custody orders almost always command mother or fathers to avoid usage of alcohol or controlled substances before and throughout visitation.

In severe instances, a court might grant complete custodianship of children to the sober parent, with the addicted dad or mom having no visitation at all. In cases where the addicted father or mother has actually caused severe harm to a kid as a result of addiction, a judge could terminate that mother or father's custodial rights altogether.

How Chemical Abuse Impacts the Division of Financial Resources



In numerous states, courts won't consider fault when splitting a marital estate (anything a married couple owns together), however in some jurisdictions, a husband or wife's habits during the marriage is pertinent to the division of assets. In these states, the court will consider a husband or wife's chemical abuse when choosing how much of the mutual property each husband or wife should get.

A judge might determine to award a greater share of the marital estate to the sober wife or husband, especially if the addicted husband or wife's addiction problems negatively affected the married couple's finances. For example, if the addicted mom or dad used a large amount of the marital savings on alcohol and drugs, a court may award the sober spouse a bigger share of the couple's assets as a type of reimbursement.

How Drug Abuse Affects Alimony

Much like how drug dependence impacts assets division, substance addiction is probably to impact alimony when an addicted husband or wife has hurt the couple's financial circumstances. In most states, a judge could choose to award extra alimony to the husband or wife of an addict if the addict drained the couple's monetary resources feeding the substance addiction.

In some fairly unusual cases, a sober husband or wife might be mandated to pay spousal support to an addicted husband or wife. If a spouse's drug addiction has caused a mental disorder directing institutionalization, the sober spouse could be obligated to pay for the costs of therapy not covered by disability benefits.

How Drug dependence Impacts Working Out a Dissolution Agreement

If your husband or wife has a history of substance addiction problems, he or she will usually be at a detriment in several aspects of the dissolution. Judges take addiction problems extremely seriously, and there may be hefty repercussions in a divorce case for an addicted wife or husband, particularly when it pertains to custody of the children.

Public accusations of addiction problems could hurt that husband or wife's reputation, profession, or even result in criminal charges. Due to this, the sober husband or wife usually has an edge in settlements and sometimes is able to acquire a beneficial settlement without having to openly try the case in court.

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