How a Husband or Wife's Drug abuse Might Alter Your Divorce Process

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Millions of Americans struggle with substance addiction, including things like the use of alcohol, controlled substances, and prescription medications. Frequently, those who are fighting addiction can produce serious problems within their own families, which can result in dissolution. If you are seperating from a spouse with a drug addiction, you must be aware of the way this trouble could affect custody of your children and property division. This article describes how a wife or husband's addiction may influence your tactics throughout a divorce.

Applying for Divorce Based upon Addiction

Today, all American states permit husband or wives to apply for dissolution based on no-fault premises, such as detachment or "irreconcilable differences," meaning you and your husband or wife can not live in harmony any longer. By using a no-fault dissolution, you do not need to show that your wife or husband did anything to bring about the rift between you.

In many states, however, in some states, including Texas and New York, you may still file for dissolution based upon wrongdoing reasons, like infidelity, bad treatment, and drug or alcohol abuse. In the areas that continue to support these accusatory dissolutions, you'll always be able to request a divorce based on your husband or wife's substance abuse.

Even in the states where you can just apply for a no-fault divorce, like California and Florida, you can still present evidence of your husband or wife's addiction during the proceedings as it may connect to child custody and other problems in the divorce.

The sober wife or husband usually has an upper hand in discussions and many times is able to obtain a beneficial outcome without having to publicly try the case in court.

How Chemical Abuse Impacts Child Custody

One particular area in which drug abuse factors in profoundly is in the custody of your children. Even though conservative drinking probably will not impact a custody determination, courts will carefully think about any drug abuse problem that impacts parenting ability. For the most part, a mom or dad with a drug abuse problem is much less likely to acquire child custody.



Courts have a number of choices to safeguard kids from a father or mother's chemical abuse problems during visitation times. The court may order that there be no over night visiting. The court might also direct a professional to supervise all visitation periods. Courts often direct that addicted dad or moms submit to regular alcohol and drug tests, go to Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous sessions, or receive substance addiction treatment. Custody orders often command father or mothers to refrain from use of alcohol or controlled substances ahead of and throughout visitation.

In severe instances, a court could grant full custodianship of children to the sober mom or dad, with the addicted father or mother having no visitation whatsoever. In cases where the addicted mother or father has actually triggered major damage to a child due to drug abuse, a court could terminate that dad or mom's custodial rights altogether.

How addiction Affects the Division of Assets

In lots of states, judges won't think about fault when splitting up a marital estate (all the things a married couple owns together), but in some jurisdictions, a spouse's habits during the marriage is pertinent to the division of property. In these states, the judge will think about a spouse's chemical abuse when choosing how much of the shared assets each husband or wife should receive.

A court can decide to grant a bigger portion of the marital estate to the sober wife or husband, especially if the addicted husband or wife's substance abuse issues adversely impacted the married couple's financial circumstances. For instance, if the addicted father or mother used a substantial quantity of the marriage savings on drugs and alcohol, a court might award the sober spouse a larger share of the couple's possessions as a kind of compensation.

How Drug Dependence Impacts Alimony

Similar to how drug abuse affects property division, drug addiction is most likely to influence alimony when an addicted wife or husband has actually harmed the couple's financial circumstances. In many jurisdictions, a judge might decide to award extra alimony to the husband or wife of an addict if the addict emptied the couple's monetary resources fueling the drug addiction.

In some fairly uncommon situations, a sober spouse might be mandated to pay alimony to an addicted husband or wife. If a husband or wife's drug addiction has actually resulted in a mental disorder obligating hospitalization, the sober husband or wife could be obligated to pay for the expenses of therapy not covered by disability benefits.

How Addiction Impacts Working Out a Dissolution Settlement

If your spouse has a history of substance addiction problems, she or he will normally be at a detriment in a number of aspects of the divorce. Courts take chemical abuse problems very seriously, and there may be hefty repercussions in a divorce case for an addicted spouse, especially when it comes to custody of the children.

Public allegations of substance addiction issues might harm that husband or wife's credibility, career, or even lead to criminal charges. Thanks to this, the sober wife or husband generally has an advantage in negotiations and sometimes has the ability to acquire a positive settlement without needing to openly try the case in court.

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