Judge pounding gavelThis is the next post in my series on handling protective orders which have been taken out in the midst of a child custody dispute. My last post explained the three basic levels of protective orders which are issued in domestic disputes and how they are obtained. In this post I will explain how a parent may dispute a PPO if they believe it has been taken out under false pretenses or if false allegations were made in order to obtain it. If you find yourself in such a situation then it is crucial that you contact a family law attorney immediately.

Preliminary Protective Orders may be issued initially with minimal evidence supporting them as judges often err on the side of caution. Judges are also mindful of the fact that requests for such orders are sometimes based upon false information. There are many ways in which the basis for the order can be debunked. First, documentation may show that the allegations are false. Such documentation may include email, text messages, phone records, as well as statements from witnesses. Second, accusers making false claims often make such accusations to the police as well. If the police investigate the matter and find that the claims are not credible, then the court may take law enforcement’s findings into consideration. Third, evidence may show that the accuser is behaving in a way which makes the claims unlikely to be true. If the accuser is regularly contacting the accused, then it is unlikely they are actually afraid for their safety. An experienced lawyer can assist you in presenting such evidence to the court.

There are many reasons why one may file a PPO under false pretenses. They may be attempting to gain some type of an advantage in child custody proceedings or another family law matter. They may also be attempting to “get even” following a bitter break up. When one is faced with false allegations it is important to understand the need to take the matter seriously. Too often people make the mistake of thinking that the false claims are “no big deal” and they will simply explain the situation to the judge. Often, however, such allegations can result in an unfavorable divorce outcome or in one losing child custody if they fail to give the matter the attention it deserves. Again, it is important to immediately speak with counsel after having been served with a protective order.

Contact our office today to speak with a family law attorney. We regularly handle such matters and are ready to assist you.