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How will his abuse towards me affect our divorce?

July 1, 2018

Abuse in a marriage can take place in many forms, which includes emotional, mental, and physical abuse. In many instances, a spouse will live for many years before realizing that he or she is the subject of an abuse marriage. It doesn’t matter what type of abuse you are going through, you have rights, which includes the right to a divorce. If you are married to an abusive spouse, it will have a significant influence on the divorce process.

How Will Abuse Influence a Divorce?
When you decide to file for divorce, you have two options that include a fault and no fault divorce. If you file for a no fault divorce, then both parties are free of fault, as the marriage may end due to irreconcilable differences. When a spouse files for a fault divorce, he or she will cite specific instances and circumstances that warrant a divorce. This could include cheating, abuse, or any other actions that are seen as detrimental to a marriage.

When a spouse files for divorce and cites abuse, it will change the way the divorce process is handled from the beginning. With these circumstances, the court may offer you protection when you file. An Order of Protection may be issued to ensure that a spouse stays safe during the divorce proceedings.

In addition, when spousal abuse is involved in a divorce, it will impact child custody, visitation, and spousal maintenance. When determining custody and visitation, the court will always put the best interest of the child first. If a divorce involves spousal abuse, it will more than likely lead to the abuser losing custody rights to the children, and it may also have an impact on visitation, such as supervised visits with a social worker present. In addition, the court will typically split any marital assets evenly, but spousal abuse could influence this as well.

Howe Does Abuse Influence Spousal Maintenance?
Any misconduct during a marriage, which includes physical abuse, will be taken into consideration by the court. The purpose of spousal maintenance is to make certain that the spouse who was abused is equipped with the financial means to support himself or herself. When any type of abuse leads to emotional, physical, or mental trauma that prevents him or her from adequately supporting himself or herself, the court will factor it into the amount of spousal maintenance that will be awarded.

If the abuse resulted in a spouse’s inability to maintain employment during the marriage, he or she may also be awarded a larger share of any marital assets. A judge will typically award a larger division of marital assets in any cases where the abuse harmed the couple’s finances.

Children, Divorce, and Abuse
Divorce cases that involve abuse are much more complex when children are involved. One of the first things you should do when you realize you are a victim of marital abuse is protect your children. This may require that you move out of your shared residence with your spouse, call law enforcement officials, and contact a family attorney. When children witness domestic abuse, it can have a long-term impact on their mental, psychological, and emotional well-being. Children may need therapy if they were exposed to seeing one spouse abuse another, and a judge will not award custody to an abuse parent.

Establishing Proof of Abuse
In most states, abuse is thought to be cruel and constitutes a fault divorce. However, in order to file for a fault divorce, you must show proof of abuse. Many individuals provide the court with photographs, medical records, videos, or police records to prove that abuse occurred. In addition, you can also have a witness testify to the abuse. If you attend counseling or therapy because of marital abuse, it can also be used as evidence.

Contact a Divorce Attorney
When you are involved in an abusive marriage, it will only add to the complexity of a divorce. In addition, it can be scary to walk away from your spouse if you feel that he or she won’t handle a divorce well. However, with the help of an experienced divorce attorney and an Order of Protection, you can get through the divorce process without being the victim of domestic abuse.

A divorce attorney can help you prepare documents, schedule court dates, and even act as a mediator to help ease the divorce process. The best way to protect your rights is with the help of an experienced divorce attorney by your side every step of the way.

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