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North Dakota doctor will retain custody of his children

A North Dakota doctor and his wife went through an extensive custody battle while getting divorced, one that even brought criminal charges into the picture. The man's wife filed a report that her husband, in the wake of the divorce filing, had given her drugs. She claimed that he gave her a dose of propofol, which is a painkiller, and that he then decided to rape her while she was incapacitated by the drug.

During the proceedings, the doctor's license was suspended. However, he said that she had made up the whole story, claiming that she only wanted to use it to make sure that she was given child custody rights, instead of him, when they got divorced.

The doctor had to go before a jury in order to clear his name of these alleged crimes, and they eventually declared that he was not guilty. Not only does this mean that he will not go to jail, but it also means that he has been given custody of the children, rather than his wife. On top of that, the suspension on his license was lifted, and he got a job again at a medical center.

His wife still argued that he should not get custody, but the most recent development in the case took place when the Supreme Court in North Dakota upheld the custody decision that was made by the lower court.

Those who are seeking child custody need to ensure that they do not stray to the realm of accusing people of crimes that they did not commit in order to get custody or, as this case shows, it could backfire. There are many other ways to seek custody rights in a divorce.

Source: WDAY, "ND Supreme Court upholds decision granting custody of children to Fargo surgeon" Kyle Potter, Apr. 30, 2014

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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