Domestic abuse is an unfortunate reality for many people. All too often kids get caught in the crossfire. But one question that so often comes up is how do I build a custody case against an abusive spouse?
One of our founding partners, Rick Jones, has a recurring guest spot on the Danny Bonaduce and Sarah Morning Show, where he answers family law questions from listeners. On a recent episode, a caller found himself in this unfortunate situation. What can he do? How should he proceed?
Related Reading: Is Visitation Allowed if You Have Warrants?
Listen to the Conversation Below:
Caller: “My wife is bipolar, I think. She’s physically, mentally, and verbally abusive to me all the time in front of my kids, and I’ve had it. What do I have to do to build a case when I do file for divorce that works in my favor? When the police come, it’s always this, ‘Little old me, I didn’t do anything,’ and they buy it.”
Rick: “It certainly can be frustrating because in doing what we do we see a fair amount of domestic violence allegations. Domestic violence is a very serious issue, and as attorneys, we take it seriously. But there does seem to be a disparity of how it’s treated depending on the gender of who’s making the allegation.
“So that being said, you were already on the right track in terms of laying the groundwork, which is the issue of a domestic violence history is a big deal when it comes to who will be the primary parent of the children.
“There are two components [to building a case]:
“One, if there is ultimately a track record. Sometimes it can be not a conviction or a charge, but the actual incident report. So hold on to those incident reports.
“Two, be the best dad you can be. Starting right now, if you haven’t already, and just make sure you’ve got a historical record of, ‘Here’s what I do. I help the kids with the homework, I’m the one that does the meal preparation, I get them to doctors and dentist appointments, things like that.
“Make sure everyone, everyone knows what kind of a tip-top parent you are.”
Related Reading: Marijuana and Child Custody: Can I Still Smoke Weed?