Should You File For Divorce While Pursuing an Order of Protection?

A professional whose children are now in high school has been dealing with her verbally abusive husband for over 20 years. She stayed with him because of the kids, but his verbal abuse has ramped up over the last few months. Recently he has begun shoving her and hovering over her while threatening to punch her in the face in addition to verbally abusing her. That was the final straw that led her to file for an order of protection in Illinois. She knows she wants to get divorced, but she is wondering whether she should pursue a divorce at the same time as the order of protection.

Domestic Violence Allegations May Impact Child Custody and Alimony

The best thing for people in these types of situations to do is to consult with an attorney. A skilled attorney can advise you on the best timing for filing for divorce. If you are in danger, you should file an order of protection as soon as possible. Filing order protection may also help you in your divorce case. Judges are required to consider domestic violence allegations in any child custody matter.

They can also consider domestic-violence allegations when making decisions about spousal maintenance, also called alimony in the final divorce decree. If you are concerned about proving that domestic violence happens, obtaining an order of protection is one way to show that you were understandably scared for your safety or your children's safety.

Regarding child custody orders, if the court finds that there has been domestic violence, the judge may look at all the relevant factors and determine what arrangement is in the child’s best interest. If there is already order protection in place, the judge will consider the order protection when making child custody determinations. However, there is a possibility that even with an order of protection, your spouse may be able to have supervised visitation with your child or children.

The Long-Term Consequences of a Restraining Order

If you are concerned that you won't be able to maintain an order of protection against your spouse once you file for divorce, this is not the case. Resolving your divorce case does not necessarily mean that your order protection will stop. Depending on the type of order of protection you have, it could last for several more months or even years. Prosecutors may bring separate criminal domestic violence charges against your spouse, and there is always the option to petition the court to renew the order protection after it expires.

Contact a Schaumburg Divorce Lawyer

If you are concerned about how an order protection will affect your divorce, you need the help of an experienced divorce lawyer who will review your case and advise you of the best legal options. If you need representation for a divorce or child support matter in Cook County, Glasgow & Olsson is here to help. When you need an attorney, experience matters. Contact us today to learn how our experience can get you the results you deserve.

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