Ask most parents and they'll admit that raising children isn't easy. It takes a lot of patience, love, and understanding. Unfortunately allegations of "child abuse" are frequently raised during the divorce process, especially when child custody is an issue.
While child abuse accusations are often based on true events, other times a bitter spouse makes false accusations for the purpose of gaining full custody of the kids, or so they can get more child support, or both.
Is your spouse calling you a child abuser and making wild accusations about the way you treat your children that aren't true? Even if these claims are baseless, you need to seek advice from an experienced attorney.
If you are convicted of domestic violence, not only will you face the criminal consequences, such as jail, fines, and enrollment in a domestic batterer program, it could affect you in more ways than one, including:
- Legal custody of the kids
- Physical custody
- Child support
- Spousal support
- Your right to bear arms
- Your right to live in your home
How does the state of California define domestic violence? It refers to hitting, punching, choking, kicking, hair pulling, and sexual assault, throwing objects, stalking, and threatening to do any of these things.
Domestic violence doesn't have to include "actual violence," it can be written, involve verbal threats, or doing anything that places other family members in fear of being physically injured.
How Family Judges Handle Domestic Violence
California's family law judges treat cases as domestic violence cases when in the last 5 years, a parent has been found guilty of child abuse, spousal abuse, or committing violence against the child's other parent. Or, if any court has decided that a parent has committed family violence against the child or other parent.
If your spouse is falsely accusing you of abusing your child, you must know that if a judge believes your spouse, or determines that you've committed domestic violence within the past 5 years, the judge cannot give you custody of the children. The judge can however, award you visitation.
Your family is at risk, even if the accusations are false. To protect your parental rights and your future, you must be represented by a qualified divorce lawyer who can navigate you through your divorce while protecting your parental rights.
If your spouse is accusing you of child abuse, contact an Encino divorce lawyer from Cutter & Lax to discuss your case with a Board Certified family law specialist.