Family Law
Divorce
Child Support
Child Support Collections
Child Custody
Paternity/Establishment

Custody and the children of drug-addicted parents

custody-of-drug-addicted-parents.jpg

A lot of people in the nation are struggling with drug addiction — and parents aren’t immune to the problem. The problem can be bad enough when only one parent suffers from an addiction. When both parents are addicted, however, other family members can be forced to seek custody of the minor children.

If you think that you may soon have to ask a court to grant you custody of a family member’s children, you need to take some steps to strengthen your case. Otherwise, custody may go to someone else — and that can compound your sense of frustration and grief.

Get involved now

Judges tend to favor relatives who have a pre-existing relationship with the children before they pursue custody. Get involved with your relatives’ lives and make sure that you’re staying connected with the kids. Take them overnight, if possible. Familiarize yourself with their school routine and social activities. This helps cement your case as the right person for custody later.

Document your involvement

You need to build a paper trail that shows your involvement. You may feel guilty doing it, knowing that you’ll probably use the records in court, but it’s necessary. Keep a log and document your phone calls, visits, what you buy for the kids and where you take them. Keep receipts and take plenty of photos. If you never actually have to request custody, you’ll just be building memories.

Document the problems with the parents

Drug-addicted parents frequently have trouble managing the basics of child care. You need to take note of everything that could demonstrate their unfitness to the court, including things like the general state of their home, the lack of food in the cupboards, absences from school, missed doctor’s appointments and any periods of time where the children have been abandoned to the care of others while the parents disappeared.

You may not have to approach the court about custody — it’s always possible the court will approach you after the parents are arrested or reported for neglect. However, you also need to be prepared to pursue the question of custody if the children are left on your doorstep or the parents clearly become able to cope. The more prepared you are for that possibility, the easier it will be in court.

Source: Divorce Magazine, “The Opioid Crisis: Protecting Children from Addicted Parents,” Danielle M. Skestos, March 26, 2018

FindLaw Network

What Our Clients Say

Ms. Marvel has assisted me regarding child support issues for the last 3 years. She is very knowledgeable in child support issues in Texas and also across state lines such as California. She came highly recommended to me by a fellow attorney, the highest compliment she can receive in my opinion. She is professional, responsive and gets the job done. Her staff is very helpful, returns calls and Karen and her staff are responsive to issues that arise. I highly recommend Karen Marvel to anyone seeking a family law attorney in Texas.
Karen Marvel is an excellent family lawyer, who presented at a legal conference I attended. I learned valuable information and tools from her that I now use to help my own clients. After the conference, I’ve called on her a few times when I needed her expertise in child support matters, and she was always willing to help. She is extremely well-respected in our legal community, and I highly recommend her services.
I recently hired Megan to represent me in my divorce. She was very easy to work with, responsive, and efficient. I was extremely impressed with her timeliness and was overall very pleased with her work. I would recommend her if looking for a divorce attorney…
I was very pleased with Megan’s performance in court. She has been a blessing in our lives and single handedly changed our lives for the better . It was a very difficult case on my end and was brilliant with negotiations with OAG. I will always be grateful to Megan and wish the best of luck in future cases…
When I needed a lawyer I asked my coworkers for their recommendations. Three of my coworkers recommended Brandon Wong and they were very satisfied with his services. I contacted Brandon and he handled my divorce in a timely and efficient manner…
I have felt so important to Brandon since the day we first met. I had a million questions and worries, Brandon made me feel informed of all possibilities and confident in him.
Meeting you and having your professional and emotional help during the process of my divorce has definitely been invaluable. In the professional aspect, you are not only a brilliant attorney but you are reasonable, just, and fair. During the process of my divorce I found myself completely…
Brandon represented me in a child custody matter. He is professional, educated, informative and provided his services in an economical manner. He worked to obtain a settlement outside of the courtroom. When the case required a visit to court, his experience guided me through smoothly and ultimately delivered the decision in my favor…
Please don’t hesitate to hire Brandon Wong. He genuinely cares about his clients. He protects his clients, he returns calls and e-mails, which is critical when you are in a situation where you need an attorney…
I would recommend Mr. Wong for his professional services. He was very attentive to my case, returning phone calls and emails before the end of every business day…
Brandon handled my divorce in a first class manner. He was always available to talk when I had questions or needed advice. He was a relentless lawyer and ensured that the settlement was fair and just…
I highly recommend Mr. Wong if you are looking for an honest and hardworking attorney who is more interested in properly representing his clients than making a quick dollar…
We received excellent legal help from Brandon Wong. Our family had a custody issue that had us spinning our wheels for a year due to the complexity. Brandon handled our case quickly and with heart. We felt genuinely cared for during the entire process and will continue to recommend him to anyone who needs legal help…
Brandon handled my divorce and made it easier than I could have imagined. He took care of everything, totally minimized the stress on me, and was extremely professional while remaining very approachable and compassionate…
Hired Mr. Wong to represent me on a child-support arrears enforcement case. Dad was ordered to pay child-support in 1991, and up until my daughter turned 18 years of age…

Read All Client
Testimonials