DCFS False Allegations Lawyer Arlington VA
A DCFS False Allegations Lawyer Arlington VA clients recommend knows that an average of twenty people per minute are victims of physical violence from an intimate partner, more than 10 million victims per year, and this statistic, as sobering as it is, only begins to tell the tale of domestic violence in Virginia.
It is likely that figure is probably low because the majority of these incidents go unreported. Often, the victims are afraid that they will face retaliation that is even worse than the abuse itself. Secondly, incidents of mental, emotional, verbal, financial, and other non-physical attacks likely far outnumber the instances of physical attacks.
At the same time, there are always two sides to every story. Domestic violence laws are in place to protect the weak and not punish the strong, but that balance is sometimes lost in the shuffle and many people are surprised to learn that they are faced with restraining orders and other restrictions.
For both accusers and accused, domestic violence allegations have a significant impact on divorce and child custody orders.
What Is “Domestic Violence?”
That term is defined very broadly, and it encompasses a wide range of activities. According to the law, domestic violence is:
- Pattern of Conduct: There is no minimum number of incidents, but “pattern” obviously means more than two or three occasions. The greater the number of verified incidents, and the shorter the time between occasions, the stronger the case.
- Intimate Partner: This term is also very broadly defined to include current and former spouses, dating partners, and living partners, in addition to persons related by blood or marriage.
- Purpose: The events cannot be random or motivated by anger; there must be evidence of a goal to establish and maintain power and control over the alleged victim.
The accused must normally prove each element by a preponderance of the evidence, which means more likely than not.
Domestic Violence and Child Custody
A family lawyer Arlington VA residents trust knows that the presumption in the law is that contact with both parents is in the best interests of the children. So, judges are often hesitant to sever ties between parents and children, but if there is evidence in the record, they do not hesitate to impose restrictions. DCFS is also notified of the domestic violence case and they may also take action/recommend to the court what type of restrictions should be placed on the accused parent when it comes to contact with their children. Some common limitations are:
- Supervised visitation, which often takes place at a relative’s home or DCFS visiting center
- Neutral site pick up and drop off if unsupervised visitation is allowed, often at the local police station
- Completion of an anti-domestic violence or anger management class
Call Our Office Today
If you are facing any kind of investigation by the state that may interfere with custody and/or parenting time with your children, contact May Law to meet with an Arlington VA DCFS false allegations lawyer to ensure that your parenting rights are protected.