Reeder & Brown, P.C.


Substance Abuse Can Affect Parenting Time in Will County

Posted on January 24, 2022 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerSubstance abuse is a serious problem in many Illinois marriages. Although divorcing couples can no longer cite substance abuse as a cause for divorce, the fact remains that one parent’s substance abuse issues can not only contribute to the breakdown of a marriage, but may also intervene with that parent’s access to their child. Drug and alcohol abuse can affect the allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time in Illinois.

Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

Couples who share children must create a parenting plan whether they were married or not. Both parents are expected to work together to design an agreement that is in the best interests of a child. An Illinois court must approve a parenting plan, and parents who have a difficult time agreeing may be required to attend mediation.

Substance abuse can interfere with every step of the parenting plan process. Parents who struggle to manage their time, money, and wellbeing because of substance abuse may be unable to attend meetings or negotiate responsibly. When this happens, a court may intervene and decide how to allocate parental responsibilities and parenting time.

Parental responsibilities, formerly known as custody, are the rights to make important decisions on behalf of a child regarding issues like education, healthcare, religion, and extracurricular activities. If your child’s other parent is abusing drugs or alcohol, it is important to let the court know so they can safely allocate parental responsibilities. Be sure to support allegations of substance abuse with evidence. A parent who struggles with substance abuse is unlikely to be given authority to make important decisions.

Parenting Time

A parent’s ability to receive parenting time (visitation) with their child can be seriously affected by substance abuse issues. A court can require a parent to abstain from drug or alcohol use before they spend time with their child. If the substance abuse is severe, or if the parent cannot be trusted to abstain from using drugs or alcohol, the court may order supervised visitation so the parent can only see their child with another responsible adult present. A parent may be ordered to attend substance abuse programs or visit a rehabilitation facility before being granted parenting time again.

Speak with a Plainfield, IL Parenting Time Lawyer

If your substance use has caused your parenting time to be restricted or removed in the past, or if your child’s other parent is threatening to restrict your parenting time now, consider getting the help of an experienced Plainfield, IL parenting time attorney with Reeder & Brown, P.C.. We have advocated for clients who need their parenting rights protected and will give you nonjudgmental representation throughout any legal parenting issues you may face. Call us today to schedule a free case review at 815-885-5980.



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