Prior Criminal History
Hi, I’m Oklahoma dads’ rights lawyer Brian L. Jackson with Dads.Law. Let’s say that you made some mistakes in your past and you moved on from that. You have a kid and now you’re looking down the barrel of a custody case. Um, and she’s bringing up your, your past. How’s that going to affect your custody case? Um, well, obviously having a criminal record doesn’t help and it’s certainly better that you don’t have one. But if, if you do, then, um, there are certain things that a court’s going to look at and deciding how much weight, if any, to give to your criminal history.
First of all, are we talking misdemeanors or felonies or both? Um, the second of all, what type of criminal history are we talking about? Are we talking about like property crime? Are we talking about violent crime? Are we talking about domestic violence? Are we talking about substance abuse crimes? Um, the reality is, uh, not all crimes are going to be treated equally and they shouldn’t be. Um, generally speaking, the types of crimes that will cause you the biggest problem are going to be like obviously domestic violence, child abuse, child neglect, um, anything violent will probably cause you a problem. And then the other one that’s, that can be a problem is anything to do with substance abuse. Those are the really, really big ones that are definitely going to cause you problems.
What Factors Influence the Impact of a Prior Criminal History?
Now, that being said, that isn’t to say that it’s necessarily always devastating. It just depends on the situation. They don’t help. And those are the going to carry the most weight, but, um, it’s not automatically devastating. It’s like many things. It depends on the circumstances and it depends on how far into your past it is and the specific crime. Like a DUI isn’t going to be as big a deal as like, if you have like felony child abuse charges in your history or like armed robbery, um, civil possession is not as much of a problem as like dealing. Um, the main things though, other than that are going to be how far into your past is it and what have you done to better yourself since then?
There’s also some legal distinctions. Like for example, if you took a conviction versus you got a deferral, um, conviction is going to be worse than a deferral. Although if you pled guilty to get the deferral, it still could be a problem. Um, but as a general rule, it’s, it’s a bigger problem if, uh, it’s more serious. It’s a bigger problem. If you took a conviction versus a deferral, it’s a bigger problem. If you pled guilty versus pleading no contest. Um, and it’s a bigger problem if you’re talking about something that happened recently versus something that’s far into your past, some other things that are, that are worth looking at. If your prior criminal record is eligible for expungement, this might be a time to think about doing that. If it’s not, you might look at getting a pardon and then expunging. That’s not to say that it couldn’t still be brought up from the standpoint of proving the underlying fact that it happened, because that could still come up, but if you get the record expunged, then the other party’s attorney can’t have the court take judicial notice of the conviction. And if you get a pardon, that’s usually a pretty good sign to the court that you actually did turn from your prior mistakes.
Seek Legal Guidance and Assistance
It’s not always like supervised visitation forever and ever. If you are looking at a situation where you have a criminal history, this is where you need to talk to a good attorney. One place you can find a good Tulsa child custody attorney is at Dads.Law where fathers are not disposable.