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Domestic Violence Victims in Divorce Cases: Legal Protections for Victims

Posted by Drama Free Divorce | Jan 31, 2020 | 0 Comments

legal protections for domestic violence victims

Divorce can be an emotionally and financially trying process. When domestic violence enters into it, its complications multiply exponentially and create further cause for alarm. Recognizing their need for protection during divorce proceedings, the legal system has taken steps to safeguard domestic abuse victims undergoing the divorce process. This article covers these safeguards so survivors may navigate these cases safely.

  1. Orders of Protection (also referred to as Restraining Orders)
    Orders of protection provide legal protection for victims of domestic abuse and are issued by courts as mandates to keep abusive individuals away from their victim, setting boundaries and prohibiting contact or harassment from occurring. Violating one can have severe legal ramifications.
  2. Emergency Protective Orders
    Surviving victims may file emergency protective orders in situations requiring prompt intervention. Such orders provide swift protection by placing immediate restrictions on those suspected of wrongdoing; typically lasting only temporarily until further legal proceedings may be pursued against those suspected.
  3. Exclusive Use of Residence
    Domestic violence victims may fear living in the same house with their abuser during divorce proceedings. However, the law provides for the exclusive use of marital homes to allow survivors to continue residing there without interference from their abuser.
  4. Visitation and Custody Restrictions
    Legal protections are offered to children when they become victims of abuse, including visitation and custody rights being restricted by courts. Furthermore, to evaluate if an abuser should become a parent again the court may order supervised visitations or professional evaluations as a means to assess a candidate.
  5. Financial Protection
    Victims of domestic violence often experience financial vulnerability. Thankfully, legal protections such as temporary support for their spouse or exclusive control over certain assets to give survivors the ability to become self-sufficient are available as measures of relief.
  6. Confidentiality Measures
    Legal protections exist to shield survivors of domestic violence from further harm or retaliation, such as sealing certain records in court orders issued to protect victims.
  7. No-Contact Orders
    Divorce courts can also grant specific orders barring abusers from making any attempts at communication directly or indirectly with victims, including emails, phone calls, and any other form of contact that might harass them. These restrictions could cover emails, calls, and any other means that might allow their abuser to harass them in some manner.
  8. Domestic Violence Counseling
    Courts often order abusive individuals to attend domestic violence programs and counseling as part of their legal protection, both to address immediate safety concerns and long-term behavioral changes to end the cycle of abuse.
  9. Legal Aid and Advocacy Services
    Legal safeguards recognize the power imbalances present in domestic violence cases during divorce proceedings. This may include access to legal assistance and advocacy services for survivors who qualify to help navigate through the system and ensure their rights are upheld.
  10. Implement Technology Protections
    With the proliferation of technology-enabled abuse, legal protections have evolved to address online harassment and stalking. Courts may issue orders restricting an abuser's technology use to stop cyberbullying or prevent accessing accounts illegally.
  11. Safety Planning Assistance
    Legal protections go beyond courtroom litigation; they also encompass helping survivors plan for safety in their everyday lives. Working together with law enforcement and support groups may be necessary in creating a comprehensive safety plan that addresses immediate concerns while simultaneously outlining plans to move away from violence in their futures.

Legal safeguards are critical in providing safety and well-being to domestic abuse survivors in divorce proceedings. Restraining order restrictions, financial relief agreements, and custody restrictions all aim to help survivors of domestic abuse break free from abusive relationships while rebuilding their lives. For survivors it's vitally important that they seek legal advice, connect with support groups, and use available resources to successfully navigate through divorce proceedings.

If you want to know more about divorce and domestic violence or if you want to consult a professional about your marriage or divorce, contact Drama Free Divorce now at (816) 615-5555. Talk to one of our divorce lawyers here at Drama Free Divorce if you want to experience an affordable divorce with very minimal stress. 

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