Substance abusing husband wants visitation with our son

My husband is an active substance abuser. He left our child and me on Dec. 26 and moved in a home with his female friend. He has since almost lost his job and wrecked his personal vehicle. He keeps asking for a quick divorce and doesn’t want me to seek an attorney because he says he does not and will not pay spousal support. I am currently a student completing an internship and have been unemployed for the past 8 years. I have tried legal aid and they cannot help me with the spousal support or custody, unless I am asking the wrong questions. Is there a way to file as an indigent and be given an attorney? I will not let him have any visits unless he can prove that he is completely sober. Can I be reprimanded for protecting my child? What are my options here? Thanks.

You cannot get a court appointed attorney for family law issues, including custody and spousal support.

There is a form you can fill out and file at the clerk’s office that allows you to file a complaint as an indigent and have the $150 filing fees waived.

You cannot be reprimanded for not allowing your husband to have visitation with your child unless you have a court order or executed separation agreement that states custody and visitation terms.

Your best option is probably to file a court action against your husband for at least child custody, child support, postseparation support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Once you are in court and you present evidence about your husband’s substance abuse, the judge may order your husband to attend and complete treatment, that your husband use a monitoring device (if the substance is alcohol), that he have only supervised visits with your child, etc.

You can use our Sample Complaint as a guide if you file a court action on your own.

You can also get access to a library of legal forms and communicate with an attorney through our Rosen Online Service. This service only costs $199/month, and would be a great resource for you to handle your custody and spousal support issues without spending thousands of dollars retaining an attorney.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh

Rosen Online | Unlimited confidential access to a North Carolina attorney for $199/mo - click here

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