Smoking marijuana can have a detrimental impact on your child custody case. As a parent concerned about fighting for the time you deserve with your children, it’s crucial to understand all the possible implications of using marijuana or dealing with accusations of using marijuana.
It doesn’t matter if even the judge or the other parent personally approves of recreational marijuana; it’s illegal in Texas. The use of marijuana, even if you’re not around your children at the time, can hurt you in a child custody case.
Understanding Recreational Use of Marijuana
Although several states have legalized marijuana, Texas is not one of them. However, many Texas residents vacation in states where recreational marijuana is legal, including California, Nevada, and Colorado. Texas family courts might respond to evidence of marijuana use for those parents during child custody litigation.
What Happens When Allegations of Drug Use are Brought Up in Texas Family Court?
One of the most significant ways allegations of drug use can influence your divorce case relates to child custody plans. Texas family code requires that Texas judges put the children’s best interests above all other considerations; therefore, claims from the other parent about your use of marijuana can cast a negative light on you as a parent and potentially even harm your visitation or child custody rights. Many Texas judges perceive the use of any illegal drugs by a parent will represent a danger to the children.
Unfortunately, most family courts in Texas do not distinguish between hard drugs and marijuana, which means that any positive drug test for marijuana could damage your case for child custody. Drug testing might be required as part of a child custody case, notably if the other parent alleges that you are using illegal drugs. In these cases, it doesn’t matter if you were using the drug legally in a state that allows for recreational use. Why? The drug tests can only confirm whether or not you have used drugs, not when and where you used those drugs. Given this reality, there is no way to prove that you consumed the drugs in another state.
Due to the best interests of the child standard, it will depend on the discretion of the judge to determine what happens to your existing custody orders. As part of the child custody evaluation in Texas, the judge will consider:
- How often you use marijuana
- The impacts of your marijuana use on the child
- Your use of marijuana’s potential for the child’s endangerment
But make no mistake: any allegation against you can prove problematic in a TX divorce. Whether it’s domestic violence, claims of drug use, or allegations of child neglect, the court has a responsibility to investigate these claims and determine whether or not this could harm the child’s overall safety.
If you’re in the midst of a custody battle with the other parent, one of the best things you can do is discontinue your recreational use of marijuana. By doing so, you’re demonstrating to the court that you’re taking this matter seriously. If the other spouse argues that you’re using or have endangered the children, you could offer to take a drug test to prove that you have not used any marijuana.
What Should I Do If I Have Used or Do Use Marijuana?
If you are currently involved in a child custody case, it is vital to consider how this could influence your potential time with your children and parenting rights. Making the mistake of thinking that it’s just marijuana can be a harmful and challenging line to walk back. If you use marijuana, it is essential to consult with your family law attorney to protect your interests. Be sure to tell your child custody attorney about any drug use since your lawyer knowing about this situation can help you craft a strategy to minimize its impact on your case.
Discontinue using the drugs. Think of it as a necessary sacrifice in focusing primarily on your role as a parent to put your children’s needs first. A knowledgeable family lawyer will be able to guide you through each step of the process when fighting for child custody. There is undoubtedly a lot on the line, and you must be prepared for the potential ramifications. Do not hesitate to contact an experienced family lawyer to learn more and discuss your specific concerns. A divorce lawyer in Texas already familiar with the damaging impact of marijuana allegations can help you today when it comes to creating a plan for your child custody case.
Youngblood Law, PLLC: Definitive, Decisive, Dedicated
Getting the court the proof it needs to believe a parent does not pose a threat to their children is a long, arduous, and expensive undertaking.
Are you concerned about your children’s other parent accusing you of using marijuana during a child custody case? You need a Fort Worth family law attorney who has years of experience in handling these complex situations. At Youngblood Law, PLLC, we provided custom work for each client, understanding that divorce and family law is not a cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all strategy. For us, success is a way of life. We approach every case with compassion and non-judgment, utilizing our years of experience and knowledge of the law while avoiding unnecessary toxicity. We’ll not only handle your divorce with professionalism and competence, but we’ll also set you up for success moving forward.
To schedule your consultation, give us a call at (817) 601-5345.
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The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from the individual author or the law firm, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting based on any information included in or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.