Filing for Divorce When Domestic Violence is Present

  • By:David Bate

Divorce Attorney

As someone who has suffered domestic violence, one of the most dangerous and challenging times is the process of ending the relationship. This is a primary reason why many, never leave. Often feeling as though they are trapped in the relationship. Unfortunately, filing for divorce when enduring an abusive relationship likely means that the divorce process may not be as smooth as most. This process can feel tiresome and terrifying, making the services of a law firm an essential support for managing your divorce.

Involve an Advocate of Domestic Violence

When facing divorce where domestic violence has played a role, survivors will surely need to make sure that they have the support they need from a victim’s advocate. A domestic violence shelter has the ability to provide you with resources, support and shelter should you need this. They can also help to protect you from your spouse when you have made the decision to end the relationship. This can give you time to collect yourself and receive the direction you need when managing the components to ending a relationship where domestic violence is present.

Contact a Lawyer

Once you have secured your safety from your abuser, you should contact a lawyer. They will work closely with you to help you initiate and manage the divorce process that lies ahead. Divorce can be particularly stressful but, especially stressful if you have experienced domestic violence. There are a number of complications that stand to arise when pursuing divorce from someone who has intentionally harmed you for what was likely a significant period of time:

They May Disagree with the Divorce

In most cases, your spouse may not be so willing to let you leave the relationship. When one spouse does not agree, it can be especially challenging to endure the divorce process. This can result in the divorce  to take longer than if both parties are in agreement. Your attorney will take steps to ensure that your spouse is served with a divorce petition. It may be necessary to have the petition served to them by a professional.

They Deny Your Claims of Abuse

Most batterers are savvy in swaying people to believe that the victim is not being truthful in their claims. It’s important that you keep documentation or a record of events that have unfolded during the relationship that can support your claims of abuse. Evidence can include:

  • Relief from Abuse Orders
  • Documentation of Abuse during the Marriage
  • Documentation of Threats that have been made after filing for divorce
  • Records of any violations of restraining orders
  • Keep copies of text messages
  • Save recordings of voicemails
  • Medical documentation
  • Photographs of injuries

Carefulling compiling this information can help your lawyer when representing you in court. They may be able to help you understand the importance of the information and even help you to gather it.

Finally escaping the clutches from someone who has been violent towards you may feel like a relief, but it may take time before you feel as though you are able to truly heal. Domestic violence may make filing for divorce more contentious and complicated. A law firm has the experience you need when managing your divorce where domestic violence has been present. Contact a divorce attorney in Tampa, FL today so that they may work to help you initiate the divorce and work through proceedings as efficiently as possible, so that you can move on with your life.

Thanks to The McKinney Law Group for their insight into family law and divorce with domestic violence.

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