substance abuse problems

Unfortunately, substance abuse problems can have a detrimental impact on a marriage. That said, it is a commonly-cited factor in New Jersey divorce cases. If you can prove that your spouse has a chronic drug addiction or alcoholism issue, you can file for divorce based on your spouse’s substance abuse problem. If you want to dissolve your marriage due to your spouse’s substance abuse problem, contact our seasoned Monmouth County Divorce & Separation Attorneys, who can help you navigate this complex legal process. 

How can a spouse’s substance abuse problem impact child custody and property division?

When the court decides on child custody, they will consider several factors. This includes whether a parent has a substance abuse problem, such as drug addiction or alcoholism, as it will affect their parenting abilities. The court prioritizes safeguarding a child’s best interests. Therefore, the court will usually refrain from granting custody to a parent with substance abuse problems. However, the court also recognizes that it is in a child’s best interests to benefit from having a relationship with both of their parents if possible. That said, the court may grant conditional parenting time through visitation.

Nevertheless, to ensure a child’s overall well-being is protected, they may require all visitation periods to be supervised by a professional and bar overnight visitations. They will also require addicted parents to submit to random drug testing and alcohol screens and attend addiction meetings. Moreover, they may even require an addicted parent to undergo addiction treatment. Ultimately, they’ll need an addicted parent to abstain from using alcohol or controlled substances to protect their child during visitation periods. It is critical to note that in extreme cases, the court will not grant custody or visitation; they can even terminate a parent’s custodial rights if deemed appropriate.

Furthermore, a spouse’s substance abuse problems can also impact property division. New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, meaning that a couple’s marital property is split fairly but not necessarily in an even 50/50 split. If a spouse’s substance abuse problem negatively impacts a couple’s finances, the court can award a larger share of marital assets to the sober spouse. This is only the case if an addicted spouse spends a significant amount of their martial assets to purchase drugs or alcohol due to their addiction.

If you want to file a divorce based on your spouse’s substance abuse problems, contact a determined Monmouth County divorce and separation attorney from Paone Zaleski & Murphy today. Our firm is prepared to help you prove that your spouse has a chronic drug or alcohol addiction that has caused the irretrievability breakdown of your marriage. Allow our firm to represent your interests to maximize your chances of achieving favorable results.