Challenging Perpetrators of Domestic Violence in Family Law Proceedings

When a person subjected to domestic violence is in a family law proceeding, there are a number of legal issues that can be challenging. These include having to deal with an abusive partner (or former partner) during negotiations and court proceedings; negotiating agreements involving children, alimony and property; and seeking support to help cope with the challenges of separation.

Challenging Perpetrators of Domestic Violence in Family Law Proceedings focuses on three legal issues that are particularly relevant to a client who has experienced intimate partner violence and abuse: the failure to consider a history of abuse when assessing custody cases, the use of harmful gender stereotypes in decision-making, and the application of parental alienation concepts to determine child-related matters. It offers advice and recommendations for how courts, lawyers, and other professionals can better ensure that their work is in line with human rights principles and the best interests of their clients, especially women and children.

The failure to address a client’s history of abuse is a serious violation of the right to life and security, and a breach of the best interest standard in child-related proceedings. In some jurisdictions, this form of misconduct may be grounds for criminal prosecution.

In some cases, this conduct may be a ground for the denial of access or visitation to a person who has been subjected to intimate partner violence and abuse. It can also be a basis for the court to refuse or delay payment of alimony or maintenance payments, and can result in an increase in spousal or child support.

Abusers can be particularly ruthless when dealing with their victim, attempting to keep the case before the court by alleging new bases for changing or modifying custody orders and causing the victim to have to answer in court each and every time a petition is filed with additional allegations. This practice can lead to significant stress, and can cause the victim to have to pay substantial legal fees in order to defend against these filings.

Counselling and behavior-change programmed can be invaluable in helping a perpetrator to overcome his or her violent behavior. They focus on addressing deeply held beliefs about violence, masculinity and control of others; the impact of their use of violence towards others, self-control, and responsibility for their own behaviors.

These programs can help a perpetrator to change his or her behavior in a way that is supportive and respectful of his or her family and other people, and that is not damaging to the relationship. They can also teach the perpetrator how to recognize the signs that his or her behavior is being viewed negatively, and how to avoid situations that could be construed as harmful.

The use of parenting plans based on false evidence is another common form of abuse in family law proceedings. This can occur when a perpetrator falsely suggests that he or she has changed in order to protect the children or to sway a judge into making an unfair decision. If you need help of a Miami family lawyer who is specializing in domestic violence case visit