Divorce can be a huge challenge, but an abusive spouse can make a divorce downright dangerous. Domestic violence can affect your divorce, especially when it comes to child custody and the division of assets. If you are seeking a divorce from your abusive spouse, here are some things you should know.
Fault vs. No-Fault Divorces
In Florida, there is no distinction between fault and no-fault divorces. You do not need to prove fault to obtain a divorce, which means that you can get a divorce without needing to prove domestic violence. You will only need to prove that your marriage is irretrievably broken, which your attorney can help you to demonstrate.
Financial Matters & Child Custody
Even if abuse isn’t important as a cause of your divorce, it can affect your property division and child custody decisions. In Florida, property division is based upon equitable distribution, which is what is a fair distribution, rather than an equal distribution. Child custody is decided based on the best interests of the child, and it is unlikely that an abusive parent will receive custody. If you are able to demonstrate the abuse you have suffered at the hands of your spouse, it is likely that the rulings for property division and child custody will be in your favor.
You are legally entitled to court help if your spouse is abusive. The court can issue an order called a Protection From Abuse (PFA) order, which forbids your spouse or domestic partner from approaching you. If the order is broken, they can be sent to jail. It isn’t a perfect solution, but it can give you some legal power to protect yourself and your children.
Get Legal Help
Don’t hesitate to get an experienced and compassionate Ocala divorce attorney on your side. Ami L. DiLorenzo, P.A. handles all types of family law cases, including divorce and requesting protective orders. If you are considering divorce to get out of an abusive relationship, we are here to help.