Child Custody and Medical Marijuana Use
Lots of people use marijuana. As more and more states legalize cannabis use for medicinal and recreational purposes, more adults openly admit to using the plant to relieve their stress and pain. In family court, marijuana use is a touchy subject. In Illinois, it is legal to use cannabis medicinally through the Illinois Medical Cannabis Pilot Program. Possession of a small amount of marijuana has been decriminalized throughout the state, but this does not mean it is actually legal to possess and use marijuana without a valid prescription. Simply using marijuana will not result in having your parental rights terminated, but it is important for you to understand that many judges are biased against marijuana use and that it can impact your parenting plan. If your former partner alleges that you are addicted to drugs or that your cannabis use negatively impacts your ability to parent your children, work with an experienced family lawyer to show the court the truth.
Keep your Medication and your Children Separate
Do not give your former partner any possible “ammunition” to use against you. If you are a medical marijuana user, keep your medication out of your children’s reach at all times. Do not use marijuana while your children are with you, and if you consume cannabis in the form of edibles, keep them in a secure place where there is no chance of your children accidentally consuming them. Failing to keep medication securely out of children’s reach is poor parenting and can be grounds to limit the time you spend with your children.
Another tip to keep in mind is to keep discussions of your medical marijuana use off social media. Posts and images can be taken out of context and used to create a narrative that is not actually true, a narrative that casts you as an unfit parent. Do not post any content that can be used against you this way.
Be Prepare to Show the Court the Truth
If you do end up in court facing allegations that you use drugs around your children and that you are an unfit parent, as a result, be prepared to show the court the truth with evidence. Have documentation available that shows that you are a registered medical marijuana patient. Other evidence to bring includes testimonies from individuals who are familiar with your role in your children’s lives and documentation showing how you store your medical cannabis.
Work with an Experienced St. Charles Family Lawyer
If your former partner tries to modify your parenting plan on the grounds that you are an unfit parent, you need to work with an experienced Kane County family lawyer to show the court that you are, in fact, capable of parenting your children and that having a consistent relationship with them is in their best interest. To discuss your case and circumstances in greater detail, contact Shaw Sanders, P.C. today to set up your initial legal consultation in our office. Reach out to us today at 630-206-3300 for help.