When determining child custody, courts focus on the child’s best interests. If one parent has a criminal record, their custody rights may be affected.
It is important to note that the court will carefully scrutinize the situation to determine if the charge or conviction would impact the individual’s ability to be a good parent. Some things to know about child custody with a criminal record can be found here.
What crimes can lead to child custody denial?
Violent crimes that could limit a child’s safety or substance abuse crimes are problematic. Also, if a parent is convicted of the following felonies, they may lose all their custodial rights:
- Aggravated assault
- Sexual crimes
It is important to note that along with the crime a person committed, factors like how old you were when you were convicted, how many convictions you have and the victim’s identity can also be considered.
The judge will also consider if the parent was merely charged with a crime or convicted of it. In some cases, this will allow the parent to continue having shared custody or visitation with their child. However, it all depends on the crime and the judge over the custody case. You can generally expect that you may be limited to supervised visitation when you have charges pending that might affect your ability to be an effective parent.
Protecting your rights to child custody
Child custody can be an emotional legal process for adults and children. Learning more about your legal rights and options is wise if you are concerned about your custody rights after a criminal charge or conviction. It is possible to maintain shared custody and visitation in some situations, depending on the situation.