Parental Disabilities Affect Child Custody Disputes

The failure of the Senate to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has recently inspired the media to focus on the struggles of disabled persons both nationally and overseas. Though the treaty was primarily intended to support expansion of rights for disabled persons overseas, Americans with disabilities still face the kinds of discrimination that should inspire our society to reevaluate and reform various regulations and institutions that affect their daily lives.

One situation that requires reform is the family legal system’s approach to child custody issues involving disabled parents. More than six million American children have at least one parent who is disabled, according to a new report entitled, “Rocking the Cradle: Ensuring the Rights of Parents with Disabilities and Their Children.” According to the report’s authors, disabled parents are more likely to lose child custody following divorce and in some cases, as a matter of course.

Even though the Supreme Court has long honored the explicit right of fit parents to retain rights to their children. Yet society has not fully embraced the idea that disabled individuals can indeed be completely fit parents. This bias needs to be immediately addressed and remedied for the benefit of both fit disabled parents and their children who need them.  Contact an experienced and successful Los Angeles family law attorney at Boyd Law for a free legal consultation if you think you may have a legal case.