Tag Archives: domestic violence

Keys to Understanding, Enforcing Your Order of ProtectionOrders of protection exist to shield victims from their domestic abusers and help them establish independence. Escaping an abuser is not always as simple as leaving them. The victim may be worried about:

  • Where they will live;
  • How they can protect their children;
  • How they can support themselves; and
  • How they can prevent their abuser from retaliating against them.

An order of protection can solve these problems. The abuser can be required to leave the victim’s residence and stay away while the order is active. The children will stay with the victim and may have limited visits with the abuser if the court determines it to be safe. The court can require the abuser to pay child support and other expenses. However, an order of protection is effective only if it is being enforced. You must understand what your order can do and how you should respond if you suspect your abuser is violating the order.

Terms of the Order

Orders of protection in Illinois offer 17 remedies to be used against the alleged abuser, who is also called the respondent. The remedies include all of the benefits mentioned above, as well as others that may apply in specific situations. You must select the remedies you wish to use in the order. Overlooking a remedy could leave you vulnerable in ways that you are not expecting.

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Presenting Evidence of Child Abuse by Co-ParentYou must act decisively to protect your child if you suspect that your co-parent is abusing your child or allowing someone else to abuse him or her. It may be necessary for you to take sole responsibility for your child until your co-parent can show that your child will be safe around him or her. However, a family court will not take away all of your co-parent’s rights and responsibilities unless you can provide convincing evidence of the abuse. You must establish that the abuse is occurring, that your co-parent is responsible, and that giving you sole responsibility for your child is in his or her best interest:

  1. Physical Evidence: You may suspect child abuse if your child is injured after returning from a visit with your co-parent. Your child may be afraid to tell you that your co-parent caused the injury, but you should be suspicious if your child cannot give a plausible explanation for the injury. If you believe your co-parent is responsible for the abuse, you should document it by taking pictures of visible injuries and visiting your child’s pediatrician.
  2. Child Behavior: Children experiencing physical or emotional abuse often show they are upset by behaving differently. Your child may react to the abuse by behaving violently, becoming withdrawn, regressing emotionally, or showing an unusual interest in topics such as sex. A child therapist can identify whether your child’s behavior may be linked to abuse.
  3. Witnesses: You should ask family members, neighbors and other people around your children whether they have seen your co-parent behave abusively towards your child. Witnesses may not have seen the actual abuse, but they can testify that they saw your co-parent behaving aggressively or inappropriately towards your child. Be aware that some people will feel uncomfortable testifying against your co-parent if they have a close relationship with him or her.
  4. Character Background: Your co-parent may have a history of abusive or violent behavior that makes your child abuse claim more plausible. You should present your co-parent’s criminal record to the court and recount your own relationship with him or her.

Parenting Battle

In order to obtain sole responsibility for your children, you must prove your parental fitness as well as your co-parent’s unfitness. The court must believe that your children will be safe and cared for with you as their only parent. A Kane County family law attorney at Goostree Law Group can explain why giving you sole parental responsibilities is in the best interest of your children. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.

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Firearms Restraining Order Can Accompany Order of ProtectionIllinois recently signed the Firearms Restraining Order Act into law, which allows someone to petition for the temporary removal of firearms from the possession of a family member who is deemed to be a threat to him or herself or others. With recent mass shootings in mind, lawmakers created the bill as a legal means for law enforcement to act on credible warnings of potential gun violence. Victims in domestic violence cases could petition for a firearms restraining order if they fear that their abuser may use a gun against them. However, the petitioner must prove that there is a need for the restraining order.

Order Details

Illinois already has a law that revokes a person’s Firearm Owner’s Identification card if he or she is convicted for domestic violence. However, an alleged offender may be a threat to use gun violence before a conviction can occur. An order of protection can immediately make it illegal for the domestic violence suspect to contact the alleged victim. A firearms restraining order addresses the specific threat of gun violence by:

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Keeping Your Phone Number and Other Protection Order RemediesWhen filing an order of protection in a domestic violence case, the petitioner may suddenly realize the various ways he or she is connected to the abuser. The victim must take steps to cut off access to properties and finances in order to shield him or herself from the abuser. However, both the accuser and accused may normally have an equal right to the shared properties. Illinois lawmakers included several remedies in the state's order of protection law that favor the petitioners’ rights to access and control various properties. A revision to the law went into effect at the start of the new year that extends those rights to cell phone accounts.

Phone Control

Under the revised law, a petitioner who has filed an order of protection may request that a wireless service provider move his or her phone number to a separate account. The law is meant as another way for domestic violence victims to be financially independent from their abusers. Domestic partners often share a wireless telephone service plan. If the abuser is the primary holder of the account, he or she has control over all phone numbers related to the account. With the new law, the petitioner

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How Domestic Violence Affects Divorce SettlementsDomestic violence between spouses can lead to or result from divorce. A person may choose to end his or her marriage because his or her spouse is abusive. In other cases, asking for a divorce may trigger a spouse’s threatening behavior. Either way, domestic violence changes how a divorce is settled. The divorce court will likely favor the victim in matters of allocation of parental responsibilities and division of property.

Order of Protection

With any case of domestic violence, the victim’s first responsibility is to protect him or herself, as well as other victims. A victim spouse should immediately seek an order of protection against the abusive spouse. The order includes several benefits for the victim spouse, such as:

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Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

 555 S. Randall Road, Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174

 630-584-4800

 1770 Park Street, Suite 205
Naperville IL 60563

 630-364-4046

 400 S. County Farm Road, Suite 300
Wheaton, IL 60187

 630-407-1777

Our Illinois divorce attorneys represent clients in Kane County, DuPage County, Kendall County and DeKalb County, including Geneva, Batavia, St.Charles, Wayne, Wasco, Elburn, Virgil, Lily Lake, Aurora, North Aurora, Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Crystal Lake, Gilberts, Millcreek, Maple Park, Kaneville, LaFox, Yorkville, Oswego, Plano, Sugar Grove, Big Rock, Bristol, Newark, DeKalb, Sycamore, Naperville, Wheaton, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Downers Grove, Lombard, Oak Brook, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Barrington, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Schaumburg, Big Grove, Boulder Hill, Bristol, Joliet, Kendall, Lisbon, Minooka, Montgomery, Plainfield, Sandwich, Yorkville and many other cities.

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