Sadly, domestic violence is an ongoing problem throughout Florida, including in Hernando County and the surrounding areas.
Many times, relationships end because of domestic violence. In other cases, domestic violence erupts between a couple who is already experiencing relationship problems.
Either way, Florida’s laws recognize that domestic violence is an emotional and physical threat both to the victims and to their children.
For example, in the world of parenting plans and parental responsibility, the law takes accusations of domestic violence into account.
A person convicted of certain domestic violence crimes may have visits restricted
For example, if a parent has been convicted of certain crimes related to domestic violence, a family law court will, as a starting point, assume that awarding parental responsibility or parenting time to that parent will harm the children.
The court may order some visits to the parent in a way that ensures both the other parent and the children can stay safe. As such, a parent may wind up having to settle for supervised visits, even if their conviction did not in any way involve their children.
Evidence of domestic violence is always at issue in child custody cases
Even if neither parent has been convicted of or even investigated for domestic violence, a party to a child custody proceeding may always bring up evidence of abuse in the home.
Judges are supposed to consider this evidence when coming up with an appropriate parenting plan. The goal is to be certain that the children involved are able to mature in a safe and stable environment.
Florida parents who are concerned about domestic violence may have legal options available to them in a dispute over parental responsibility. Likewise, those accused of abuse should be fully aware of their rights and alternatives.