If you add abuse to a bad marriage, the situation goes from difficult to dire. For a wife, divorcing an abusive husband can be difficult, because you don’t know how a violent man would react. However, if the abusive husband is putting the well-being and the life of the wife and children in jeopardy, divorce may pretty much be the only solution.
Divorcing an abusive husband becomes difficult in cases where the marriage has been going on for a long time, and the husbands are the only providers of the family.
What is Abuse in Terms of Family Law?
In the context of family law, the word abuse has a broader meaning. Abuse is when someone recklessly or intentionally tries to cause or is successful in causing:
- Sexual assault
- Injury to any part of the body
- Causing the person to live with a serious threat of grievous bodily harm or damage at any stage
- Engaging in any kind of behavior that is defined in the California Family Code section 6320, which defines such behavior as, threatening, battering, striking, stalking, harassing, etc.
Divorcing an Abusive Husband
The key to divorcing a husband who has a history of frequent abuse is to act immediately and decisively. The law in California protects the spouses from any kind of abuse from their other half and you should try and use those avenues of the law to your advantage.
One of the first and most immediate actions that need to be taken is to seek an immediate restraining order in the family law court. Sometimes though, owing to the situation of the couple or any other legal issues, restraining orders might be unavailable. In such cases, you should ask your divorce lawyer to ask the court for protective orders that limit and regulate the contact between the two spouses. In addition to this point though, there is also a need for more practical steps on the side of the wife, where she needs to move out of the house or away from the abusive husband.
Gerald A. Maggio is an experienced Orange County divorce attorney and family law attorney located in Irvine, California, serving the Orange County and Riverside areas. Mr. Maggio assists clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, divorce mediation, child custody, prenuptial agreements, stepparent adoptions, and other family law issues. Mr. Maggio has practiced law in California since 1999, and founded The Maggio Law Firm in 2005, focusing exclusively on divorce and family law matters.