RD- an actual child support client
"My case was handled quickly and with ease."
01/10/2014
RD- an actual child support client
"My case was handled quickly and with ease."
01/10/2014
“Prospective clients may not obtain the same or similar results.”
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Defining Domestic Violence and History of Domestic Violence

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Family in need of attorney

The manner in which the court will assess the presence of domestic violence, for the purpose of an injunction, varies from the manner the court will assess domestic violence and abuse in a dissolution, or similar family law related proceeding. For injunction purposes, the standard used is whether events have already occurred involving one or more of the specific enumerated offenses defined as domestic violence, or whether there is reasonable cause to believe that the victim is in imminent danger of becoming a victim.

In contrast, in dissolution and other family law proceeding involving issues of child support and custody, the court will evaluate the matter in terms of whether there is a ‘history of domestic violence.’ By including the wording ‘history of,’ there need not be a conclusive finding, or prior entry of an injunction for protection, in order for the court to provide a victim who alleges a history of domestic violence with certain protections during the dissolution proceeding. In example, for purposes of parenting coordination, the court may not refer the parties if there is a history of domestic violence, unless both parents consent. Florida Statute §61.125(3)(b), provides:

In determining whether there has been a history of domestic violence, the court shall consider whether a party has committed an act of domestic violence as defined s. 741.28, or child abuse as defined in s. 39.01, against the other party or any member of the other party’s family; engaged in a pattern of behaviors that exert power and control over the other party and that may compromise the other party’s ability to negotiate a fair result; or engaged in behavior that leads the other party to have reasonable cause to believe he or she is in imminent danger of becoming a victim of domestic violence. The court shall consider and evaluate all relevant factors, including, but not limited to, the factors listed in s. 741.30(6)(b).

In interpreting this statute, note that a determination of a ‘history of domestic violence’ includes the factors which define domestic violence provided under the injunctive relief statutes of Chapter 741, but also includes additional provisions. One section in particular, “engaged in a pattern of behaviors that exert power and control over the other party and that may compromise the other party’s ability to negotiate a fair result,” demonstrates the legislative intent to provide protection to the parties to a dissolution, custody, or support proceeding, even in the absence of an injunction.

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If you are a party to a dissolution, custody, support, or similar family law matter involving issues of domestic abuse or domestic violence, it is important that you know your legal rights. The Gainesville Attorneys, of the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A., have decades of family law practice experience, and remain committed to providing aggressive representation to our clients throughout the entire legal process. Let our dedicated and knowledgeable legal team go to work for you.