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A Colorado Springs Child Custody Attorney Discusses Alcoholism and Divorce

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

n the state of Colorado and around the nation, alcohol addiction is a growing problem, but when children are involved, there is nothing more troubling than having a parent who is an alcoholic.  As a Colorado Springs child custody attorney, I have worked with many people seeking to divorce an alcoholic husband or wife, and I’m not going to lie to you – these can be some of the nastiest divorces of all. 

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Even though Colorado is a “no fault” state, couples with children will likely need some intervention from the state in order to ensure that the alcoholic parent can maintain unsupervised custodial rights. 

If alcohol addiction is a factor in your divorce case, you have several options in the state of Colorado.  The non-alcoholic spouse may request frequent drug testing, such as urine or breath analysis, or they may need to use a digital alcohol detector to determine their sobriety.  If alcohol abuse testing reveals a long-term pattern of abuse, a Colorado Child and Family investigator may need to get involved to determine what type of custodial arrangement is in the child’s best interests.

Your attorney can advise you on the best course of action, but many people try to do hair follicle testing on the alleged alcoholic parent.  While this is a more expensive test to perform, the results can show patterns of drug and alcohol abuse for up to one year, separating casual users from habitual abusers with ease.  It is also nearly impossible to adulterate this test, since the analysis is done on the internal cortex of the hair.

If either parent tests positive for alcohol abuse, the court may revisit the custody agreement and make some very dramatic changes, such as supervised visitation, or the revocation of all parenting time unless or until the alcoholic parent completes a court-approved treatment program. 

Are you seeking advice on how to deal with alcohol abuse in your Colorado divorce?  Don’t try to handle it yourself – seek the advice of a Colorado Springs Child Custody attorney

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