Alleging Abuse in a Custody Dispute
There are cases of real and significant abuse by parents against children. Abusive parents, in many cases, should not have unsupervised contact with their children. However, sometimes, parents may become so desperate that they’ll say anything in order to get custody of their children. Needless to say, this is not a good or helpful thing to do. It may even backfire.
Proving Abuse to the Court
If one parent alleges abuse, and it is proven that the other parent did abuse the child, there is a strong possibility that the abuser’s custody rights will be terminated.
To investigate these allegations, the family courts will look for documentation, such as criminal convictions or doctors’ reports that include signs of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. If abuse is proven, a judge may still award supervised visitation before completely terminating the parental rights of the abuser.
Penalties for False Allegations
However, the San Diego courts take false allegations of abuse very seriously. In fact, parents who falsely accuse the other parent of abuse in a custody dispute may actually have their custody rights stripped. (Though courts may order supervised visitation if they feel it’s in the best interest of the child’s health, safety, and welfare.)
In addition to this, the parent who has been falsely accused may also press criminal charges against the accuser. If the accuser is convicted in that criminal case, the accused parent can also file a motion to have a current child custody order changed or reconsidered.
Lastly, when one parent has accused another parent of child abuse and it’s found that no abuse occurred, the family courts will likely force the accuser to pay certain expenses for the accused. These expenses typically compensate the accused parent for any costs he or she incurred in order to prove there was no abuse.
If Your Ex Alleges Abuse, You Need Help
Parents will do anything for their children. Unfortunately, that sometimes means falsely claiming abuse in order to win a custody dispute. This should never be a means to an end, and any parents who do so are going to face some very harsh penalties—one being that it will likely hurt their own custody case.
If you are currently involved in a custody dispute, contact The Law Office of Thomas M. Huguenor at (858) 458-9500. Mr. Huguenor has been practicing family law for over 35 years, and he knows how to win cases without ever resorting to false allegations made against another parent.