Articles Posted in Domestic violence

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Alcohol abuse on the part of a spouse or parent may often lead to divorce, custody battles, or other events that may lead you into family court. Alcohol abuse, however, may cause unique issues to develop in your family law case, and it is always important to have an attorney who understands the effect that alcohol-related allegations may have on your case and life in general. Whether you are alleging alcohol abuse on the part of your spouse or you have been accused of drinking too much yourself, such allegations will likely play a large role in the strategy and logistics of your case.

Domestic Abuse Cases

Alcohol abuse is often linked with instances of domestic abuse. If you believe that your partner’s alcohol abuse has placed you or your children in immediate risk of harm, an attorney may help you apply for a temporary order prohibiting your spouse or partner from contacting you or your children. An order may also issue you temporary possession of the family home and temporary custody of your kids until you can have a formal hearing. At a formal hearing, a family law attorney can help you present evidence of your partner’s alcohol abuse and resulting threats or physical harm.

Sometimes, people make false allegations of domestic abuse to start to get the upper hand in an upcoming custody battle. If you have been falsely accused of domestic abuse, you may be facing serious consequences such as losing access to your children or criminal sanctions. You should always seek the help of a lawyer if false domestic abuse allegations have been made.

Custody

If you believe that your spouse has an alcohol problem, you may argue that shared custody or even unsupervised visits are not in the best interests of your child. On the other hand, you may have a spouse who is trying to keep your children away from you by falsely alleging that you abuse alcohol. Either way, it is important to have an attorney representing you.

If your spouse abuses alcohol, an attorney can help you get a court order that he or she may not consume alcohol while in contact with your children. This can be done by requiring an alcohol monitoring system, such as a SCRAM bracelet, a portable device that tests your breath for traces of alcohol, or through regular urine tests. Conversely, if your spouse has accused you of alcohol abuse, you may demonstrate that you are not using alcohol by using SCRAM or other tests. Regular clean test results can be strong evidence to present to a court that your spouse is making false allegations of alcohol abuse and that your children are safe around you.

Alan R. Burton is an experienced family law attorney who is dedicated to helping Boca Raton residents protect the well-being of their families in divorce, custody, and abuse cases. Mr. Burton has experience handling cases involving alcohol abuse allegations or any other issues that may complicate your case. If you are experiencing any family law issues, do not hesitate to call our office today for assistance.

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Few things are more frightening than violence or the threat of violence against you or your children. When that violence or threat comes from a spouse or member of your family, you may be even more afraid and not know how to protect yourself and your family. Fortunately, Florida law provides protections for residents who are victims of domestic violence in an attempt to keep them safe from their volatile family member. This protection comes in the form of an Injunction for Protection, and is often referred to as an order of protection or a restraining order.

What exactly is domestic violence?

Before you apply for an Injunction, you should be aware of the law’s definition of domestic violence. Florida law defines domestic violence as any of the following actions against a family or other household member:
· Assault
· Battery
· Sexual assault
· Stalking
· Kidnapping
· Any criminal offense resulting in injury
· Aggravated assault
· Aggravated battery
· Sexual battery
· Aggravated stalking
· False imprisonment
· Any criminal offense resulting in death
The law also defines “family or household member” as any of the following:
· Spouses or former spouses;
· Two people related by marriage or blood;
· People living together as a family, or who previously lived together as a family in a
single housing unit; or
· Parents of the same child, whether they are married, divorced, or were never
married.
If you have suffered any of the above actions, or have a reasonable fear that you are in immediate danger of one of the above actions by a family or household member as described above, you may file a petition for an Injunction for Protection with the court. You do not have to be seeking a separation or divorce or criminal charges against the spouse of family member to qualify for court protection. A judge may award a temporary Injunction without the presence of the other party if the judge deems it necessary.
A temporary Injunction prohibits the offender from any further acts or threats of violence against you, may order them to leave if you share a residence, can prohibit them from showing up at your home, work, or school, and can also award you temporary custody of any minor children who may be involved. Your immediate Injunction is only temporary, however, and in order to obtain a final Injunction, you will have to attend a full hearing in front of a judge. The other party will be able to present their own case against an injunction at this hearing, so it is always important that you have the assistance of an attorney.
If you have been the victim of domestic violence, your first move should call the police or otherwise make sure you and your children are safe. However, your next step should be to contact the Boca Raton law office of domestic violence attorney Alan R. Burton. Mr. Burton can help domestic violence victims obtain an Injunction for Protection and can help to enforce that Injunction to ensure you and your children are safe from harm. Dealing with domestic violence can be difficult, but you do not have to face the issue alone. Call dedicated attorney Alan Burton today for help.

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The issue of vacating temporary injunctions against domestic violence was dealt with in Schock v. Schock, 979 So.2d 1201 (Fla. 4th DCA 2008).

In this case the father had obtained injunctions against his child’s mother, along with another one against her boyfriend. The allegations made included neglect and abuse against his daughter. The duty judge found the allegations appropriate for the issuance of an injunction, that the child involved was the victim of domestic violence, and was in immediate and present danger, and he issued the orders accordingly.

In response to all this, the mother filed an Emergency Motion For Return of Child and Change of Custody in the dissolution of marriage action that had been filed. Two days after the mother had filed her motions, the trial judge assigned to the divorce case entered two orders vacating the injunctions that had been previously entered by the duty judge.

The judge decided on his own that the allegations made by the father in his application for an injunction against the child’s mother were conclusory, and those which were made against the boyfriend were based upon hearsay.

On appeal, the trial judge was reversed. The appellate court stated that once an injunction is issued under Section 741.30, Florida Statutes, the injunction cannot be vacated without a hearing. Sanchez v. State, 785 So.2d 672, 676 (Fla. 4th DCA 2001).

As a result of this ruling, the temporary injunctions were re-instated, and the trial court was instructed to conduct an evidentiary hearing before ruling on the motions filed by the mother. See also White v. Cannon, 778 So.2d 467, 467-68 (Fla. 3rd CA 2001).

For further information, advise, or any questions on this topic, please click the following link: www.alanburtonlaw.com