Huge Win for Domestic Violence Victim
I live for bringing down bullies. Nothing in the world gives me greater joy than to stand up and hold accountable someone who has victimized and terrorized people smaller, younger or weaker than them. Nowhere is this more apparent than in cases involving domestic violence, control, fear and coercion.
In one particular case, things didn’t start out great for my client. She had fled the home of her capture with her child. He filed an emergency motion to bring her back. It was a classic he-said, she said. We convinced the judge not to enter an emergency order bringing her back but to instead appoint a best interest attorney for the child and a court appointed advisor to investigate the claims.
In this particular case, the Father had never physically abused the Mother and child directly, making my job as the attorney even more difficult. In the months that followed, we gathered mounds of evidence and witnessed through out the country supporting the claims of my client, proving domestic violence and obtaining a recommendation that Mother be awarded sole legal decision making and Father be given NO PARENTING TIME!
In order to make a case that a parent should not be granted parenting time in Arizona, a person must first prove significant domestic violence occurred. Then, the burden is on the perpetrator to prove that parenting time can be made safe. In all actuality, I think a parent should not stop after simply proving the existence of abuse. I think evidence should be gathered and presented to prove that parenting time would not be safe. This is only appropriate in the most extreme cases. The majority of the time it is best for a child to have both parents involved. For those slim minority of cases where a child and parent would not be safe with any contact whatsoever, a client should select their attorney carefully and examine their strategy early and often. Evidence, witnesses and experts should be utilized to explain and persuade the judge of your desired outcome.
One of the best parts about representing a victim of domestic violence is watching them change throughout litigation. Watching them walk into or out of the courthouse with their heads held high, no longer afraid. Listening to a client take the witness stand and refuse to keep secrets any longer makes me love what I do every day. On days like that, I feel like a super hero!