How Does a Positive Drug Test Impact Child Custody?
When it comes to the care and protection of children, no hurdle is too great. That is why there are strict rules when it comes to the custody of children. Therefore, in the case of a positive drug test many people have questions about how it could impact their ability to retain custody of their children. There are a few common situations that should be discussed regarding this matter.
1. Maternal Drug Testing at Birth
It is not unusual for a mother to have a urine drug screen while pregnant and prior to delivery. It is also not unusual to test the baby's urine or stool for breakdown products of certain medications. If any of these are positive, it could trigger the Department of Social Services to conduct an investigation to figure out if the environment is suitable for the baby to live in. If they don't think the environment is safe for the child, the parents could lose custody of their child.
2. If a Custody Disagreement is Ongoing
Some people could already be involved in a child custody dispute, such as in the setting of a divorce. If one of the two parents has a positive drug test, either current or in the past, they should keep in mind that this is a factor that the judge will consider. It could make it more difficult for one of the two parents to have visitation rights, let alone retain custody, in the setting of a positive drug test.
3. Sticking to the Judge's Orders
Another common issue that drug testing can present is that parents could be required to undergo regular drug testing as a part of their child custody agreement. It is important for them to take these tests on time and that they be clean. A missed drug test could be just as bad as a positive one. Therefore, parents should do everything in their power to stick to the schedule.
Ultimately, everyone's individual case is different and everyone deserves to know all of their rights as well as the rights of their child before accepting any decision. For this reason, it can be helpful to speak with an experienced legal provider to learn more about how child custody and drug testing are intertwined.