For many years now, we've been hearing about the harmful effects of secondhand smoke. But can secondhand smoke have effects on your child custody and time-sharing in New Mexico? It appears that more and more family court judges are taking this into account in custody and time-sharing decisions due to the potential harm to the children associated with second-hand smoke.
Custody and time-sharing decisions in New Mexico are made on the basis of the "best interest of the child." Because smoking has potentially serious health consequences to the children, smoking in the presence of the children would clearly weigh against the children's best interests. The way it is dealt with will depend upon the particular judge and the response of the smoking parent.
Although the courts are unlikely to sever contact with a child simply due to smoking, there may be prohibitions on smoking around the children. There may be a few steps along the way, but continued violations of these prohibitions may very well result in contempt of court, ultimately resulting in restrictions or limitations on custody and time-sharing for the offending parent.