Published on:

Court Decides Custody in Light of Abuse Allegations


Child visitation issues in divorce actions are reliant upon the agreement of the parents, cooperation from the children, and decisions of the courts. A New York Family Lawyer said the court of New York strives to enhance the relationships of the children with their parents. However, it is not always possible for everyone involved in the situation to continue to foster a positive relationship with each other.

Many factors affect the outcome of custody decisions in the courts of New York. When a custody issue is shadowed by domestic violence, it can be even more difficult to ensure that the children continue to have a good relationship with both of their parents. When domestic violence issues are involved, the rights of the parents to have visitation with the children becomes secondary to what the court determines is in the best interest of the child. If the child would be endangered by contact with the abusive parent, then any positive benefits from visitation would be countered by the negative effects of the contact with the abuser.

This is especially true when the courts have ordered that the abuser is prevented from contacting the child or the other parent because of a protective order issued by the court. When the court determines that a protective order is necessary to protect the family members, it changes all of the rules. A New York Criminal Lawyer said protective orders are necessary to ensure the safety of family members when one or more of the parents have been charged with offenses related to domestic violence. Offenses that are included in most domestic violence laws include but in most cases are not limited to offenses related to physical assaults, such as simple assault, aggravated assault, and assaults against minors or the elderly. They include offenses related to battery, such as simple battery, aggravated battery, and battery against minors or the elderly. Some states have laws against criminal trespass that include property damage that is less than $500 in value, or going onto a property without the consent of the owner or remaining on a property without the consent of the owner. There are numerous other offenses that relate to domestic violence such as stalking, aggravated stalking, harassment, harassing phone calls, and other offenses that are used in domestic situations to instill fear in the other members of the family.

The issues that exist in families that suffer from domestic violence make it especially important to protect the family members from any additional trauma associated with contact with the offender. In some situations, the violence has been targeted at only one family member and the others were unaware of the violence. That is typically the case in familial rape situations that involve a stepchild. The father may differentiate between his natural children and his stepchildren. In situations of that nature, it may not be important to restrict the father’s contact with his natural children; however, it would be critical to prevent his contact with the other children in the home. A Nassau Family Lawyer said orders of protection are issued by the court in response to a real threat of past or future violence in the home. An order of protection can be appealed, but there must be a valid showing that the original order was issued in error.

In one case, the father was expelled from his home based on acts of domestic violence which placed several of his family members at risk for future injury. He filed a motion with the court to have the order overturned so that he could return to the home. A Queens Family Lawyer said the courts evaluated the request and found that it was lacking any merit based on the acts of violence that had precipitated the creation of the original order.

At Stephen Bilkis & Associates with its child visitation Lawyers there are convenient offices throughout New York State and Metropolitan area. Our civil Attorneys can provide you with advice to guide you through difficult situations. Hiring a child custody attorney can prevent you from losing precious time with your family.

Contact Information