Domestic Violence May Impact Your Orange County Child Custody Case
The National Center for Victims reveals that nearly 1.4 million people are stalked every year in the US alone. This may be considered domestic violence during divorce proceedings and may impact on child custody if there is a conviction.
It goes without saying that the number of victims stalked in the US every year is highly unsettling. Unfortunately, in many cases, the victim was not aware they were being stalked until things get out of control. If you have instituted divorce proceedings and find you are being stalked, immediately speak to an Orange County divorce attorney. Generally speaking, women are more likely to be stalked than men; and in most cases, women are being stalked by men whom they were once involved with intimately. This may mean dating, long or short term cohabitation, and even marriage.
Stalking is usually defined as multiple unwanted acts that escalate over a period of time and get more dramatic and more out of control. No one has to put up with stalking and this is where an Orange Country divorce attorney will be able to assist you. There is no reason for you to have to change your lifestyle to feel safe. In many cases, stalking may lead to even more violent crimes such as murder.
While there are several things that you may do to take action in situations such as this, speaking to a highly skilled and empathic Orange County divorce attorney should be the first thing on your list. Find out how you may protect yourself and your children if you feel you are being stalked as a result of a failed cohabitation or marriage.
Aside from speaking to a compassionate divorce attorney with extensive experience in the area of domestic violence, make sure you keep a record of every incident where the person stalking you tries to contact you. This means by any method of communication and includes phone, texts, emails, in-person visits, and other incidents that seem strange and unusual.
Even though you may set boundaries and explicitly tell the person they are making you uncomfortable, they may continue to harass you. You may be able to put some distance between them and you and your children, but if they are dedicated to stalking you for their own reasons, getting them to cease and desist is often difficult. You definitely need to speak to a knowledgeable Orange County divorce attorney to find out what your options and legal remedies are here.
Do not attempt to do anything about the stalking on your own and always tell anyone who may be able to help you about any suspicious activities you have witnessed. This would include speaking to your attorney to apprise him or her of anything untoward or anything that indicates an escalation in the harassment of the stalker. Having been involved with the person, you will have good insight into what they may be doing and why and what they may attempt to do to harm you.
If the stalking incidents are not resolved by a conviction and jail time, and the significant other or spouse has been accused of domestic violence, this will have a direct impact on any child custody disputes.
Domestic violence is simply not tolerated when it comes to the safety and best interests of any children involved in a marital breakup. This is clearly stated in the California Family Code, Section 3044 that outlines “Upon a finding that a party seeking custody of a child has perpetrated domestic violence against the other party seeking custody of the child or against the child or the child’s siblings within the previous five years, there is a rebuttable presumption that an award of sole or joint physical or legal custody of a child to a such a person is detrimental to the best interest of the child.”
Gerald A. Maggio is an Orange County divorce attorney, in Irvine, California. For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com.