Most divorced moms and dads have parental rights. However, certain factors may result in a judge depriving a parent of their custodial rights. You need to understand what these are so that you don’t unintentionally lose custody of your kids.
Neglecting your child
A family law judge may deprive you of custody if they have reason to believe that you’re neglecting your child. The court may take your son or daughter’s unkempt appearance, your choice to leave them at home alone or the poor food choices you offer them as evidence of neglect.
Corporal punishment and domestic violence allegations
The court may also take away custody of your child if a parent or mandated reporter shows evidence that a child has suffered abuse in a parent’s home. Judges may be hesitant to allow a child to continue living in a parent’s home if that parent is facing domestic violence charges.
A judge may also limit a parent to supervised visitation after a drug or drunk driving conviction. The court may reinstitute a parent’s custodial rights after they complete substance abuse classes, multiple successful drug tests and other requirements.
Judges expect parents to adhere to their established custody agreement. The court may deprive a parent of their parental rights for repeatedly violating it. If a parent takes their child out of the area without first getting the other’s consent, they could lose custody. Any instance in which a parent keeps their child from seeing their other parent as scheduled may also result in a loss of custody.
Parents must steer clear of falsely accusing the other parent of abuse or otherwise trying to coax their child in to believing negative information about their co-parent. Any mom or dad who engages in doing this may lose their custodial rights.
It can be particularly challenging to gain back custody of your child once you’ve lost it. An experienced attorney can help you.