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Unfortunately, a DUI charge can have a negative impact on your child custody arrangement. Reach out to our skilled Bergen County child custody attorney to learn more.

Can a DUI charge affect child custody?

If you were charged with a DUI in New Jersey, you can expect to face obstacles when trying to obtain custody of your child. This is because alcohol abuse is one of the most common issues that come up in many custody disputes. Because of this, a DUI charge can also appear as evidence of an allegation of alcohol abuse which can show the court system that you may be a serious risk to your child.

The largest reason a DUI affects your chances of obtaining child custody is that a court will look at prior history to determine or measure your moral fitness as a parent. To learn more about the effects of a DUI on child custody, contact our firm today.

Will the effects of a DUI charge influence a child custody battle?

The consequences of a DUI conviction on your custody battle will depend on the kind of custody that you are interested in. Essentially, the outcome may be different for legal custody than for physical custody.

  • If you are pursuing legal child custody, your DUI conviction may not impact your custody battle. This is because it is believed that a DUI conviction would not greatly affect your decision-making responsibilities on matters of religious education, tutoring, choice of schools, extracurricular activities, cultural education, and other comparable issues.
  • On the contrary, if you are seeking physical child custody you will likely be unsuccessful because it can be asserted that you may prioritize drinking instead of your children, which can challenge your capacity to be an adequate parent. Also, it can also be argued that you may also drive under the influence of alcohol with children onboard which can put your children at risk. Because of this, while you may be able to provide for the children’s expenses and other basic needs, you can be denied custody on this ground.

As you can see, a successful child custody case when you have been convicted of a DUI offense is rare. A judge will always prioritize the best interests and safety of the child. If you have further questions or concerns, reach out to speak with our dedicated Bergen County family law attorney.


Here at McNerney & McAuliffe, we understand how confusing certain legal matters can be, which is why we are here to provide clients from all walks of life with the experienced, compassionate legal guidance they need. If you require the legal assistance of an attorney to help you through a criminal law matter, personal injury matter, family law matter, or otherwise, you can turn to us. Contact McNerney & McAuliffe today to learn more about what we can do for you.

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