Quote Gideon58: Proving the Britch to be an unfit mother is going to be pretty much impossible and unless he can, there's no way any court would give him custody over the mother.
I so agree. A doctor no less. Like Patrick doesn't have a past. Lets see, a drunken father, to counter Britt's mother. A drinking/pill problem of his own. Depression. Another child he can't handle, who has a history of running away. Yea, the perfect guy to win custody......
Oh Yes compare Noah`s drinking problem, with a murderer and someone who is keeping Robin hostage. So Patrick suffered from depression after his wife died,he was able to pull himself out of it. Em was running away from Britch. Who wouldn`t
More and more these days courts are giving children to fathers. All he has to show is that Britt is a potential danger to the child by association with a know criminal whose whereabouts are currently unknown and that she had recent contact with. That would weigh heavy in any court.
His drug addiction would come into play but all he has to prove is that he is sober and has undergone treatment. That is all any parent with an addiction who is seeking custody would have to prove. I worked in family court for years so I am sure of this.
As far as Emma running away, all they have to do is ask her why she ran away. She is old enough to testify to the fact that she ran away because Britt yelled at her. Would not fare well for Britt in that respect. And running away and being found the same day, would hardly be considered a history. Courts would be more interested if Patrick were abusive to Emma, like has he ever hit her or failed to provide for her needs. He has never been verbally abusive either. What Britt said to her to make her run away would be considered verbal abuse and intimidation of a child. And during his addiction period along with the treatment phase, he always had an adequate care plan for Emma, which is what real courts in real life take into account.
They can not use Noah against Patrick because he has limited contact with Emma in person. And he is also sober and it is not illegal to be a recovering addict.
They both would also have to provide character witnesses and I think Patrick has more people who would say he is a good father, than Britt would have to say she is not a danger to her child. Patrick could get physical custody of the baby. But still have allow Britt to visit the baby with supervision. She could be given supervised contact until her mother is captured, and then all bets might be off, because the reason for him wanting custody, would be over.
It really doesn't matter because it seems this all may be a moot point.
I could actually counter about every point you listed but like you say, it's all going to be moot anyway.