How A DUI Can Impact Child Custody Ruling

Child custody battles are a norm during divorce cases. During the case, it is the judge’s job to make sure that the child’s best interest are looked out for whenever making a ruling. This involves looking at many things, one of which is the driving records of individuals contesting custody of the child. The court will look if either party have any DUI convictions on their driving record. Despite the fact that each custody case is looked at and handled differently, there are a number of factors of any DUI conviction that will be looked at during the custody case.

Was There Time Spent Apart From the Child?

Sometimes jail time is involved in DUI convictions. Depending on the length of the jail time, it could mean that a party was not present for a significant part of their kid’s life. The court may use this a reason to give custody to the other party, especially if the party was the only provider for the child during their DUI conviction. Is Living With the Party Considered Dangerous Situation? A DUI conviction history may cause the court to view a party as a dangerous parent, especially due to the fact provision of transportation for the child is critical responsibility of a guardian or parent. Was The Child in the Car? It is a great disadvantage for any party if they had a their child in the car when they were driving under the influence. Hart Levin states that the court may look at a this as an act of actively endangering the child life and may the party involved custody.

Is the Individual’s License Suspended?

If the party with a DUI conviction has a license that is suspended for an extended period, the court may deny custody. This is especially the case when the court view the party’s lack of providing transport for their child as something that will in one way or another negatively affect the child. Do the Individual Have Multiple DUIs? A party with multiple DUIs on their record is less likely to be awarded custody of a child. Repeated DUI convictions may prompt the court to view the party involved as an irresponsible individual and thus a dangerous parent. How Long Was the DUI Conviction(s)? Some states, like California, will drop driving under the influence convictions from an individuals record after 10 years, especially if they were not criminal charges. In such states, a DUI charge older than 10 by years is not something that is expected to affect the involved party’s chances of getting a favorable ruling during a custody battle.