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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 30375
Experience:  Criminal Justice Degree, JD with Criminal Law Concentration. Worked for the DA and U.S. Attorney.
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I have joint custody of my child. I was arrested

Customer Question

I have joint custody of my child. I was arrested for shop lifting last night. What will that do to my custody.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hi, I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened. The custody order continues as is unless or until someone moves to have it modified. You don't automatically lose custody because you were arrested for a misdemeanor. The vast majority of people who are arrested for shoplifting do not serve any jail time, so time with your child isn't impacted in that way at all. If this is your first offense, there's a good chance you'll be able to get a diversion program which would allow you to get the charges dismissed. When you have your first court appearance, if you cannot afford a lawyer, ask the judge to appoint one for you to discuss your options. The other parent could file a Motion to Modify Custody based on the arrest. They have to prove to the judge that it's in the best interests of the child not to continue to live with you. They may have a better argument if the child was with you at the time (and old enough to be aware of what you were doing). But you'll still have an opportunity to argue why custody shouldn't be changed, and you can try offering to take a parenting class to ease the judge's mind. If you have any questions or concerns about my response, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.