Experienced divorce, collaborative divorce and family law attorney.

Domestic Violence and Child Custody: How to Build Your Case

November 4, 2016
|
Comments off
|

childrenDuring a divorce, child custody is one of the most important things to consider. While 11% of custody cases are resolved during mediation, some cases are more complicated than others.

In nearly all cases, it’s an ideal situation for both parents to have custody of their children, but spousal or child abuse is a reasonable cause for demanding sole custody.

Here are some tips for making you and your child’s lives much easier during this difficult time.

Make Custody a Priority
While divorcing your abuser is an important step, it is most important to obtain sole custody of your children.

Until sole custody has been rewarded to you, your abusive spouse legally has the right to visit and make legal decisions regarding their child. While you can protect yourself from your abusive spouse, your child cannot.

See a family lawyer as soon as possible to expedite the custodial process, and obtain an emergency custody order. The order will be temporary, and the permanent decision will come in the divorce proceedings. But until then, it’s the best option.

Make a Safety Plan
Leaving your abusive home is the first step to safety, but even after that, there are no guarantees.

Plan to stay with a family member or close friend that you trust, but try to go somewhere that your spouse would not expect you to be. In every case, have a backup plan. There are plenty of shelters that help people who are escaping abusive relationships. When you consult with a family lawyer, it is wise to ask if they have any recommendations.

If you and your spouse have a joint bank account, take as much cash as you can to get by in the meantime. Pack extra clothes as well, and a comforting item for your child, like a toy or blanket.

Hold Onto Your Records
Hang onto any police report, photo, or other form of documentation that illustrates an incident of physical or emotional abuse involving either you or your children. Be sure to keep track of the dates, times, and places that all of these incidents occurred. They will be of great help in court and will help solidify the case against your abusive spouse.

Domestic abuse is a serious matter. It’s grounds for a high level of legal representation beyond divorce and custody cases.

Ken Phillips is a lawyer with a background in both criminal and family law. When you need a place to turn, call Ken Phillips, Attorney at Law.

Ken Phillips
  • "Kenneth Phillips is the greatest attorney in Sumner County! Regardless of what situation you are in he will take care of you to the fullest. He saved me from losing my child and my freedom. Thank you personally, Mr. Phillips!"
    - Name Withheld for Privacy
  • "I just wanted to thank you for your help and compassion as I went through my divorce. I have and will continue to recommend you to my friends and family."
    - Casey. C
  • "I would like to thank you and Angela again for the outstanding effort thus far in our case. The families and I really felt a great sense of security this weekend, the first time in quite a while. The thanks and appreciation are extended from the entire family."
    - Name Withheld for Privacy
  • "I appreciate what you’ve done for me. You’ll never know how grateful I am."
    - Dennis W.
  • "We are so lucky we found you. You have been such a blessing."
    - Terry F Hendersonville, TN
  • "You’re the best attorney I’ve ever had!"
    - Mike P. Gallatin, TN
  • "I appreciate all the extra time and attention you devoted to my criminal case. It ended with a very positive outcome as a result."
    - Kevin M, TN