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RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 13903
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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I just filed for divorce & have an 11 month old. My husband

Customer Question

I just filed for divorce & have an 11 month old. My husband wants 50% custody but works long hours & hasn't been too involved in his life. He is also an alcoholic. I am a stay at home Mom & have been with my son every moment since his birth. Who gets custody? And how can I prove his alcoholism? We live in California.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 8 years ago.

Thank you for contacting Just Answer. In California, dissolution of the marriage may be based on either of the following grounds; (1) Irreconcilable differences, which have caused the irremediable breakdown of the marriage or (2) Incurable insanity. Obviously, most people go for the first reason. Irreconcilable differences are those grounds which are determined by the court to be adequate reasons for the marriage to not continue and which make it evident that the marriage should be terminated.


In terms of making a custody decision, the court will look to do what is in the best interest of the child. Factors the court will consider include the age of the child, the parent who has been the primary caregiver up to this point, the ability of each parent to provide a stable and loving environment, and how effected the child will be by the custody arrangement. In this situation, given the limited facts you've mentioned, it is unlikely that a judge would allow for joint custody of the child, especially since the child is so young, and you have been the primary caregiver up to this point. Also, his working long hours could present an issue for providing care to the child, as far as his availability. It is more likely that a judge would grant you primary physical custody and your husband liberal visitation.


With regard to the alcoholism, first and foremost, remember that it is considered a disease, and it is unfair to punish a person for an illness. That being said, I understand your concerns. You can try a variety of things. First and foremost is your testimony, and that of others who have witnessed his alcoholic behavior. You can keep a journal of how many drinks he has in an evening, or videotape his behavior when drunk. Perhaps you have receipts from the liquor store showing how much he spends on alcohol. However, I don't see the alcolism playing a big role in this situation, especially since you have been the primary caregiver and your husband's schedule keeps him from home much of the time.


I would suggest you consult with a family law attorney in your area to discuss this matter further.



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