Trifecta: Charged with Domestic Assault, Order of Protection and Facing Divorce
Divorce by itself is an emotional roller coaster. Divorce coupled with domestic violence adds extreme stress, financial strain and uncertainty to the alleged abuser as well as the alleged victim. You have probably been charged with domestic assault, an order of protection has been put into place which has put you out of your home and possibly away from your children and now you have to deal with looming court dates. It is important for the alleged abuser to understand how the impact of a domestic assault charge and a pending order of protection can impact a divorce case. This is what we call the trifecta. Spouse gets into an argument with his/her wife/husband and bam, the police are called, someone is charged with domestic assault. Then you get served with an Order of Protection and Complaint for Divorce. Panic mode sets in. What do you do?? Call Freeman and Fuson. We can handle this trifecta for you.
Domestic violence is very serious and the courts in Tennessee take it very seriously. It can have a lasting impact on your divorce case. This means that you need to get out in front of these allegations before you are found guilty of domestic assault or an order of protection is put in place against you as both can have drastic repercussion in your divorce case.
How does an Order of Protection and Domestic Violence Impact Divorce?
Having an order of protection in place when a divorce is filed essentially gives the alleged victim a one up in the divorce case right out of the gate. An order of protection will remove you from your home, grant temporary custody of your children to the alleged victim, grant temporary family support to the victim and can potentially be in place during the entire divorce case. If the Order of Protection is granted, it will often be adopted by the Divorce Court and remain in place throughout the pendency of the divorce requiring you to remain away from your home, kids, and public spaces where your Wife, and children if included on the Order of Protection, are located.
Removal from Home:
In Tennessee, if an Order of Protection is granted the alleged abuser will be required to vacate the residence, he/she shared with the alleged victim. If a divorce is also pending, that order of protection stays in place for the life of the divorce, unless modified by the divorce Judge. This is very important for the alleged abuser to understand because this means that he/she could potentially be required to stay out of their home for longer than a year. That also means that the alleged abuser and alleged victim cannot have any personal contact with one another during the divorce. That will require both parties to communicate through their attorneys about everything from the payment of their bills to the needs of their children.
The alleged abuser could also be required to pay for the marital expenses while the divorce is pending, mortgage/rent, utilities, insurance, etc. even though they are not residing in the marital residence. That could potentially mean having to pay for expenses for two different residences while only having one income.
If children are involved and they are not covered under the order of protection, then the parties will need a third party to facilitate the exchange of the children since the parties cannot have any contact with one another. When deciding on parenting time for the minor children, the judge will also take into consideration the facts surrounding the alleged domestic violence and if there is any hint that abuse did in fact take place, you could be facing supervised visitation with your children. Not only is that very awkward it can also be expensive as most places charge a fee for supervising parenting time.
The above leaves the alleged abuser very vulnerable and at the mercy of the court system.
A charge of domestic violence/order of protection can have lifelong repercussions in your divorce case. The courts in Tennessee take domestic violence very seriously. You need to hire competent and compassionate counsel to represent you in all three cases to streamline the process. Call Freeman and Fuson and let Joseph Fuson represent you on the domestic violence charge, either Joseph Fuson or Carolanne King handle the Order of Protection and then let Ms. King guide you through the divorce case. Tell your story to one firm and let Freeman and Fuson handle all three cases.