There are numerous grounds for divorce but few as tragic or scarring as domestic violence. Domestic violence divorce cases are often complicated because of the need to prove the victim’s allegations and how the violence affects child custody and other matters. This is why you need a compassionate and dedicated divorce attorney on your side to help you get the help you need and end your marriage with an abusive spouse in the safest and most efficient way possible.
What Is Considered Domestic Violence?
The legal definition of domestic violence includes multiple types of abuse, including physical, emotional, sexual, economic, and psychological abuse. Threats, stalking, and cyber-stalking can also be considered domestic violence. Marriage between two parties is not required for an action to be classified as domestic abuse because this abuse can occur between other family members, dating partners, children, and cohabitants.
How to Report Domestic Violence
In emergency situations where you feel threatened because of domestic abuse, call 911 for immediate help. For less urgent matters, call a domestic violence hotline for advice and references to local resources. It is beneficial to have a bag packed with essentials in case you need to leave your home unexpectedly due to an escalating situation.
File a domestic violence incident report with the police and get a copy of the report for your own records. To support your police report, document the incident with personal notes, photos of injuries and damaged property, and any witness statements. It is important to seek treatment at a hospital for your injuries, find a safe place to stay, and consult an attorney to get an order of protection and discuss how the incident affects your divorce case.
How to Prove Domestic Violence in Divorce
Records of police involvement help prove domestic violence divorce cases, as well as medical records that document the victim’s injuries. Obtaining a legal restraining order against the abuser can offer additional proof of domestic violence. If domestic violence becomes involved in your divorce case, your attorney may need to adapt your cases’ strategy with regard to child custody, division of the marital estate, alimony, and settlement.
Domestic Violence and Claims to Children
In domestic violence divorce cases, the abusive spouse is less likely to gain custody of the involved children. Based on the situation, a judge may terminate all custody rights for an abusive spouse, order that all interactions with children occur in a public place, or that overnight visitations are prohibited.
Compensation for Domestic Violence Divorce Victims
Through the legal process, domestic abuse victims can gain protections and compensation through both the civic court and the criminal court. In addition to the standard divorce settlement, domestic violence victims may be entitled to additional compensation for damages from injuries and for therapy after a traumatic event.
Resources for Domestic Violence Victims
If you are dealing with a domestic violence divorce matter, the lawyers at Alatsas Law Firm can help you get the protections you need and the outcome you deserve, while making the entire process go as smoothly as possible. We can help you pursue a complicated at-fault divorce that involves domestic violence allegations and present a strong case on your behalf to stand up for your rights.
Please call 718- 233- 2903 or contact us online for a free consultation to get the process started.
If you are in trouble and need help, here are some domestic violence resources to know:
- National Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233 (SAFE)
- NYC 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-621-4673 (HOPE)
- New York State Domestic Violence Program Directory by County