Divorce can be an uncertain time in life. On top of any emotional turmoil you may be going through, you have to contend with the ambiguity of your financial and family future.

If you and your spouse cannot come to terms over custody of your child, a court will determine your custody status. When Nebraska courts determine child custody, they will put the best interests of the child first. Thus, parents with a DUI charge may be concerned if their charge will reflect negatively on them as a parent to the court.

What courts consider

While a DUI can definitely be a factor in a child custody case, they don’t always have to be. To understand when a DUI can affect a child custody case, you first have to understand what the courts take into consideration when drafting a custody plan.

Here are a few key considerations Nebraska courts will use to determine child custody:

  • Parents’ history of domestic violence, negligence or substance abuse
  • Mental and physical health of parents
  • Parents’ ability to provide a stable home
  • Safety and well-being of the child

How this relates to DUI charges

According to the statute, DUI charges aren’t technically considered for determining child custody. However, a DUI can provide evidence that you do not satisfy one of the requirements for responsible custody.

For example, multiple DUIs may indicate a history of substance abuse. Furthermore, aggravated factors—such as having a minor in the car at the time of your DUI—may provide evidence that you pose a safety concern to your child. In both of these cases, the DUI may have an effect on the outcome of your child custody case.

Child custody and DUI charges

A bad night shouldn’t keep you from retaining custody of your child. If you are worried that DUI charges may affect your ability to retain custody of your child, you should contact a lawyer to help review your case and combat any negative interpretation of your previous charges.