Woman Lying on Table with open pills bottle

Court Ordered Drug Testing in Child Custody Cases

Substance abuse is a tragic and widespread issue in the United States, and drug and alcohol use play a major role in many divorce cases. If you are headed for divorce and believe your spouse has a substance abuse problem, it is crucial to address this concern before it endangers your children.

Child custody is often a highly contested issue in many family law proceedings. When there are allegations of a parent’s drug or alcohol abuse, matters become further complicated in custody cases. The court awards sole, physical or legal custody based on the child’s best interest. Determining the best interest of the child requires weighing all relevant factors, including allegations of a parent’s drug or alcohol abuse. If one parent has any documented history of substance abuse or criminal activity related to illegal drugs or alcohol, the court may require drug and alcohol testing. 

Positive Drug Test and Child Custody

A positive drug or alcohol test result does not automatically constitute grounds for custody arrangement adverse to a party’s interest. However, it will be considered when any decision for custody is being made. If a party believes a challenge to the results is in order, he should voice the challenge immediately.

What to Know About Requesting a Drug Test

If you are thinking about asking that your spouse undergo drug testing during your case, it’s important to remember that the court may order that you undergo testing, as well. The court may also order both spouses to share in the cost of testing. 

Remember, the court must act in your child’s best interest. Although drug or alcohol use on its own is not enough cause to restrict custody, many judges find substance abuse to be detrimental to the well-being of the children. 

Speak with a Georgia family lawyer as soon as possible if you are unsure whether you have justifiable grounds to seek a drug or alcohol test for your divorcing spouse. A qualified family law attorney will help navigate your child custody case and assist you in determining the best way to approach drug and alcohol testing on either side of the table.

There is a wide range of consequences that may arise if there have been allegations of drug or alcohol abuse in a custody dispute. Therefore, it is recommended that the parties contact a family law attorney to ensure compliance with the law and avoid potentially catastrophic outcomes. Attorney Crystal Wright is equipped to handle allegations of drug abuse in contested custody cases.

Contact attorney Crystal Wright to zealously litigate or amicably resolve your child custody issues today.