Getting a divorce always comes with its fair share of stresses and complications. Divorcing puts a lot of financial and emotional concerns on your plate, so getting a DUI charge on top of it makes everything even worse.
If you face a drunk driving charge while ending your marriage, you may wonder how it will impact the process. Here are some ways a DUI conviction may influence your divorce proceedings.
1. Child custody
When making custody decisions, Colorado courts prioritize the well-being and safety of your children above all else. If a cop pulls you over and arrests you for drunk driving, the court may see you as an unfit parent. This is especially true if you have one or more prior DUI convictions. Parental substance abuse is a serious factor in custody and visitation proceedings. Your spouse may use your arrest against you while fighting for custody. The impact will be more serious if your children were with you when you were driving when your vehicle was pulled over.
2. More financial stress
Going through a divorce is costly enough on its own. A DUI charge will likely come with more expenses, including court fees, fines and damages. If you lose time from your job to attend court dates or spend time in jail, you will experience a lot more financial strain. After a conviction, your auto insurance premiums will likely rise. Any additional monetary burden on top of splitting your assets during divorce may leave you with serious financial struggles.
3. Greater emotional difficulties
A potential drunk driving conviction may cause you to suffer more emotionally. This may negatively impact your relationships with your spouse, children, other family members and friends. Your partner may feel even more anger and frustration toward you than before, possibly leading to more contentious battles in court. Even if your divorce case has been amicable and straightforward, a DUI charge can throw a huge wrench in it.
However, a DUI arrest does not necessarily result in a conviction. With the help of a DUI defense lawyer, you may be able to minimize the consequences of a DUI arrest, or avoid a conviction altogether.