Does Domestic Violence Affect Spousal Support

How Does Domestic Violence Affect Spousal Support?

Pierre Domercq Domestic Violence

How does domestic violence affect spousal support in a Carlsbad divorce?  Domestic violence can and will have an impact on issues such as child custody and parenting time, child support and spousal support here in North County San Diego divorce cases.  One example involved a case where the husband and wife had been married for over 32 years.  The couple separated, and 4 months later the estranged wife attacked her husband with a knife in an attempt to sever an important portion of anatomy.

Protection orders were issued against the wife, and domestic violence and assault charges followed in criminal court resulting in a conviction and 3 month probation sentence.  Interestingly the wife subsequently asked the divorce Judge (a separate Court and case) to order the former husband to pay her temporary spousal support.  The court ruled against the wife citing the domestic violence.

The Fourth District Court confirmed this ruling on appeal, noting that the issue wasn’t the assault with the knife, but that her specific intentions with the knife were an instance of domestic violence.  The Court noted in its ruling that “Domestic violence means abuse committed against an adult or a minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or person with whom the suspect has had a child or is having or has had a dating or engagement relationship.”

How does domestic violence affect spousal support in a Carlsbad divorce?  Domestic violence can and usually will have an impact on family court orders regarding custody, parenting time and spousal support.  Unfortunately, we have seen many cases where allegations of domestic violence have been levied in an attempt to gain the upper hand in a divorce proceeding.  Burke & Domercq LLP condemns domestic violence in all forms.  We also understand the fact that not all domestic violence allegations ultimately prove to be true.  If you are falsely accused of domestic violence and have been issued a restraining order you will need to fight it aggressively to protect your legal position and interests within the divorce itself.