Domestic violence can leave huge scars, both emotional and legal. Abuse can take a significant toll on a marriage and sometimes plays a central role in divorce. If you are dissolving a marriage that has involved domestic violence, you should consider consulting a divorce attorney to discuss the nuances of your situation. At Goldstein Law Group, our Monmouth County domestic violence lawyers have handled cases at the intersection of divorce and domestic violence for more than 20 years. We stay abreast of changes in New Jersey law and aggressively advocate for our clients' rights.Domestic Violence and Abuse
In New Jersey, domestic violence can include physical abuse, emotional abuse, assault, harassment, threats, false imprisonment, and stalking. Domestic violence charges can affect all aspects of divorce, including child custody, visitation, property distribution, and alimony. A lot rides on a domestic violence charge, and you should discuss the issues with an attorney familiar with the effect of these charges on divorce proceedings. Within 7-10 days, the court can hold a hearing to determine whether a permanent restraining order is appropriate. There are occasions when one spouse is extremely abusive, and the other spouse needs to get away with the children as quickly as possible. We can help victims of domestic violence obtain the protection that they need to stay safe. There are also occasions in which a spouse files a false allegation of domestic violence. In those cases, failing to contest the charges can have a significant impact on a future divorce proceeding.
The aspect of divorce that is most likely to be affected by a domestic violence charge is child custody of minor children. Under N.J.S.A. 2C:25:29(b)(11), the court can award temporary custody of minor children, with a presumption that the child's best interests are served by awarding custody to a non-abusive parent. A spouse who is awarded temporary custody in a domestic violence action can use the temporary custody to remind the court during divorce that he or she was subject to domestic violence by a spouse.
One consideration when determining a child's best interests for purposes of deciding custody is a history of domestic violence. The court will look at whether or not the domestic violence affected the child, whether the person accused of the behavior is a danger to either the child or the other parent, physical evidence of abuse, the status of the criminal case, and the severity and frequency of domestic violence over the course of the child's life.
If the accused parent loses custody or has only limited visitation with the child, he or she may also have to pay more spousal support. When the court is dividing property, and one parent has already been awarded temporary possession of the home and has custody, due to the temporary restraining order against the accused parent, the court may award the home to the parent with custody in order to provide the children with stability.Consult a Skilled Domestic Violence Lawyer in Monmouth County
At Goldstein Law Group, our Monmouth County domestic violence attorneys understand how difficult it can be for families to recover from these situations. Domestic violence charges can have an impact on the rest of your divorce proceedings. Whether you have been accused of domestic violence or have been hurt by an abusive spouse, our family law attorneys can help you understand your options. We serve people in communities such as Rumson, Red Bank, and Old Bridge. Contact us at 732-967-6777 or via our online form for a free consultation.