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How a conviction for domestic violence can affect your custody rights

| Mar 29, 2021 | Domestic Violence |

If you’ve been arrested on a domestic violence charge, you were probably instantly made aware of how even the accusations against you — let alone a conviction — have adversely affected your life. More than likely, you’ve been served with a restraining order that limits your freedom and forced to turn over any firearms you own.

If you’re a parent, you could also soon be facing a custody hearing over your children.

Whether the incident occurred between you and your current spouse or an ex, your children’s other parent will probably ask for an emergency custody hearing before long — and there’s a strong chance that you could have your child custody rights limited while you await the outcome of your case. 

What could happen to your custody rights over your children?

If your co-parent requests an emergency custody hearing, a judge will seek to determine a child whether a child’s current custodial arrangements expose them to any unnecessary danger.

The court will likely want to know whether a child witnessed or was subject to any domestic violence at their parents’ hands. A judge may limit you to supervised visitation or deprive you of your custodial rights if they fear that you may inflict violence upon your child based on mere allegations alone. Why? Because the best interests of the child always guide the court’s decisions, and the court doesn’t usually like to take chances with a child’s safety. In family court, you aren’t “innocent until proven guilty.”

This is a great time to exercise patience and self-control because you have a lot on the line. While you may be limited to supervised visitation with your children now, the court will likely wait until your domestic violence case is adjudicated before taking any other actions. Showing restraint now can go a long way toward convincing the judge that you’re a safe, responsible parent.

How to proceed in your domestic violence case

When you’re a parent with custody issues, there’s a lot more on the line with a domestic violence charge. You need a strong defense and smart guidance during this time. Working with an experienced Colorado Springs attorney can help you protect your way of life, your career, your freedom and your family.

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