If you are facing charges of driving while intoxicated (DWI), it can negatively impact you in Texas divorce proceedings.
Getting charged with a DWI can impact every area of your life. In addition to fines, driver’s license suspension, and the possibility of a jail sentence, a DWI can remain on your record and impact your reputation in the community and your ability to get a job. Unfortunately, a DWI conviction can also negatively impact your rights in the event of a divorce or other family law related matter, jeopardizing your financial security and your relationships with your family members.
Impact of DWI on Divorce
Going through the breakup of a marriage is always challenging. In addition to the emotional impact you are likely facing, there are serious financial ramifications, as well. Under the Texas Family Code, there are certain key divorce-related issues that must be resolved before a final order can be issued. A DWI can impact your rights in these proceedings. This includes:
- Divorce grounds: Habitual drunkenness is one of the grounds for divorce in Texas. If you have a DWI and your spouse is filing for divorce on the basis of these grounds, your charges can be used against you as evidence to support those claims.
- Marital property division: Texas is a community property state, meaning that any assets earned, acquired, or otherwise accumulated during the marriage belong to both you and your spouse. A DWI charge typically involves heavy fines and court costs, along with payments for mandatory counseling and drug or alcohol evaluations. Your spouse’s divorce attorney can use this to imply that you wasted assets during the marriage, which would entitle your spouse to a larger share in a settlement.
- Alimony payments: If drug or alcohol abuse issues are determined to have led to the breakdown of the marriage, it could work against you in terms of alimony or spousal support payments.
DWI and Child Custody Proceedings
If you are a parent and going through a divorce, child custody proceedings will be one of the most important parts of your case. In determining who will be the child’s primary caregiver or whether the parents will share custody, the court will look at various factors, such as the parent’s ability to provide and care for the child, as well as behaviors or other issues that could end up putting the child at risk.
Unfortunately, accusations of drug and alcohol use and the existence of a Texas DWI charge on your record could cost you in terms of your rights in child custody proceedings. A DWI could also impact your visitation rights, limiting the amount of time you get to spend with your children and possibly requiring supervised visits.
Get Our Pearland Divorce Attorneys on Your Side
At Scott M. Brown & Associates, we act as a strong legal ally on your side, fighting to protect your rights in Texas divorce proceedings. To request a confidential consultation regarding how we can help you, call or contact our Pearland divorce attorneys online today.