Drug and alcohol dependency issues have destroyed countless marriages. Such problems often also derail child custody cases. You may lose the ability to see and spend time with your kids.
But what happens when you clean up your life and turn things around? What can you do? Do you have any rights to see your kids?
Goldberg Jones’ founding partner, Rick Jones, recently stopped by The Danny Bonaduce & Sarah Morning Show on 102.5 KZOK FM to answer audience questions. One caller found himself in just such a predicament and wanted to know what he can do.
Here’s how the conversation went:
Caller: “I have two kids I haven’t seen since 2004. Me and their mom split up, had some chemical issues. I’ve since cleaned up my life, you know over the last 10 years. Her parents got custody when she got arrested for selling meth to a cop. Now, they keep fighting me about not seeing the kids. Do I have any rights to see these kids?“
Rick Jones: “When you say ‘they kept fighting you’ about not seeing the kids, what do you mean by that?”
Caller: “Well I’ve tried to do it civilly, with emails and what not. I’d like to get to know these kids. They are 14 and 16.”
Rick Jones: “So they’re not letting you have access?”
Caller: “No, not at all.”
Danny Bonaduce: “So you’ve been blocked by them since 2004? 14 years from seeing these children?”
Rick Jones: “Did you get divorced from this person? Is there or was there ever a parenting plan?”
Caller: “We were never married.”
Rick Jones: “So you’ve never sought a parenting plan?”
Caller: “No, I have not. They changed their last names too.”
Rick Jones: “Did this happen in Washington?”
Rick Jones: “So you’ve really been on the outside looking in. I really appreciate your call because you’re saying, ‘I get it, it’s been awhile, how do I get back in?’
So, there really are some open doors for you. It’s going to be a bit of an obstacle course. But you’re also seeing some light at the end of the tunnel with the ages of the kids. Once they turn 18 there is no parenting plan and no rules in place in that sense. But, what I recommend you do, talk to an attorney first so they can dive in on your facts, but what you may be able to do, is to file a Parenting Plan Action, and try to create a parenting plan. Fully expect though, to go through some drug and alcohol testing.“
Danny: “But remember, when you’re forced to take a drug test, and I’ve been there buddy. It may be a little humiliating, but when you pass, they all have to shut up now. When you pass a random drug test, you’re a different guy than when you were “dirty”. So, yeah it’s humiliating, it’s embarrassing and guys watching you and all that stuff, but when you pass that test, you’re exactly the man you said you were, and they can’t prove otherwise. So how do ya’ like that?”