We handle family and divorce cases.
A protective order is a court order that can be entered by the court to protect a victim of domestic violence, assault (sexual or otherwise), abuse, stalking, and/or threats by a family member, household member, or (current or former) dating partner. We have written more about these cases here: Legal Protections for Family Violence (Part 1) and here Legal Protections Available for Family Violence. A review of those posts provides context for this one. Today, we will discuss some of the considerations that are pertinent to these types of cases.
As we become more of an electronically-connected society (and, when is that increase ever going to end?) potential dangers to our children, via the internet, are enhanced. Our children spend more and more time online, for activities such as their schooling, gaming, socializing, and other group meetings. In fact, according to the FBI, “(t)he internet, for all of its benefits, also gives criminals and predators an easy way to reach young people.”
The FBI most often sees crimes against children begin when an adult:
- Forges a relationship with a young victim online and then later arranges to meet and abuse the child; or,
- Coerces a child into producing sexually explicit images or videos through manipulation, gifts, or threats—a crime called sextortion.” 
The ability of a court to restrict the residences of children is one which varies under state law, from state to state. I am licensed to practice law in only the State of Texas, so my discussion will focus on Texas law. While there may be similarities to the laws of other states, you should check with an attorney licensed in the state in which your case sits, if that state is not Texas.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “A substance use disorder (SUD) is a mental disorder that affects a person’s brain and behavior, leading to a person’s inability to control their use of substances such as legal or illegal drugs, alcohol, or medications. Symptoms can range from moderate to severe, with addiction being the most severe form of SUDs.” When a parent has a SUD, the parent-child dynamic is always affected to some degree.
In our practice, we see cases in which there is a pending criminal charge, such as for DWI, and a civil case, involving child custody issues. Sometimes, the criminal charge involves an alleged assault. Whenever we have one of these cases, we build our case on demonstrating the best interest of the child. It is too easy for the parents to focus on one another, as opposed to what the court truly cares about: what is best for the child or children of those parents. Our job is to make sure that the case is properly focused where it should be.