This post concludes and recaps my series on how drug use by a parent can impact child custody cases in Virginia. I felt it necessary to write on this topic as, for obvious reasons, parents are often unsure as to how they should proceed when their counterpart is abusing a controlled substance. It is important to understand that one must go through the legal system and not take matters into their own hands. The first step in going through the legal system is to contact an experienced family law attorney. If you need assistance then contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.
I have addressed several topics over the course of this discussion. Matters which I have analyzed include:
- How Virginia family law judges view drug use
- How to file for emergency child custody
- Attending an initial emergency child custody hearing
- Discovery in child custody cases involving drug use
- Trial in emergency child custody proceedings
There are several reasons why it is important for parents to understand these topics. First, not all forms of drug use are viewed equally; a Judge is likely to be more concerned about a parent who heavily abuses heroin as opposed to a parent who occasionally uses marijuana. Second, the process allows for one to request an expedited hearing if the matter is truly an emergency. Third, it is important to know what to expect at the initial hearing. Fourth, if discovery is not conducted properly then a parent may find themselves without needed evidence at trial. Finally, being prepared for trial is crucial to making sure that your case is properly presented.
One point I have made throughout these articles is that it is crucial to go through the legal process when you feel your ex may be abusing a controlled substance. Taking matters into your own hands, or engaging in self help, may result in the court taking an unfavorable view of your actions. This can result in you losing your bid for custody and such conduct is typically not in the best interests of your child. Contact my office today to speak with a child custody lawyer. I regularly handle such matters in Virginia Beach and Norfolk and my firm is ready to assist you.
We also service Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News, Hampton, Williamsburg, and Yorktown, as well as the surrounding counties of Northampton, Isle of Wight, York and James City.