Can Domestic Violence Impact Alimony Payments in California?

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If you are the victim of abuse and violence at the hands of your spouse, getting a divorce can be extremely challenging. As such, it’s essential to prepare for and understand what will happen when you and your spouse divorce. This helps make the transition out of the relationship easier. As such, you’ll want to keep reading to discover whether or not domestic violence will impact alimony payments and how Los Angeles domestic violence attorneys can assist you through this challenging time in your life.

What Constitutes Domestic Violence?

Unfortunately, domestic violence is very prevalent in many relationships. As such, understanding what constitutes this abuse is vital. When you suffer emotionally, mentally, sexually, or physically at the hands of your spouse, you may not know how to proceed. The following behaviors are examples of domestic abuse:

  • Humiliates or degrades you in front of friends and family
  • Puts their hands on you
  • Threatens or coerces you
  • Pressures you sexually
  • Restricts your ability to spend money
  • Prevents you from leaving
  • Stalks you
  • Isolates you from friends and family

In many instances, abusers will engage in a cycle of abuse in which the spouse will be affectionate and regretful for their actions before becoming aggressive and violent.

If you are divorcing an abusive spouse, it’s necessary to understand that you can receive a restraining order during this process. Generally, you will receive an automatic temporary restraining order, but a domestic violence retaining order offers more support and protection. This helps prevent your spouse from taking any children out of the state, selling assets, withdrawing all the money from a shared account, or altering your insurance policies.

Does Domestic Violence Impact Alimony Payments?

If you are a victim of domestic violence, you must understand how this abuse will impact alimony payments. Generally, if your abuser has faced a misdemeanor conviction for their violence against you, there is a “rebuttable presumption.” This essentially states that the abusive spouse will be barred from receiving alimony from their victim. However, this is not automatic, and the spouse accused of divorce can submit evidence to rebuke the claims.

However, if your spouse was convicted of felony domestic violence, you will not be ordered to pay alimony regardless of whether or not your spouse wants to deny the claims. It’s critical to note that not only is your abuser barred from collecting spousal support, but you will not have to pay their attorney fees and they cannot receive your medical or life insurance benefits.

When you are the victim of domestic violence, understanding the impact it will have on your divorce is vital. Unfortunately, this can be an incredibly complex process. If you are suffering abuse at the hands of your spouse, it’s imperative to enlist the assistance of a committed attorney to help guide you through your divorce. At the Zitser Family Law Group, we understand you have enough to worry about. As such, our team will handle the legal complexities so you can focus on healing from your relationship. Contact our firm today to learn how we can assist you.

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