What You Need You Know About Domestic Violence
Domestic violence includes controlling behavior toward intimate partners or family members, aggression, and violence. It is a serious issue that impacts countless families across New Jersey in ways that are unimaginable to most people who have not experienced similar situations for themselves. At Romanowski Law Offices, we help victims of spousal abuse seek protection from further abuse. We also represent individuals who have been wrongfully accused of domestic violence – who often suffer tragic consequences due to these false and damaging allegations.
While we can assist in any context, we have particular experience addressing domestic violence issues in connection with divorces and child custody cases in New Jersey. If you have experienced abuse or are facing false allegations, we can help make sure that you and your children are protected from further harm.
About the Domestic Violence Situation in the U.S.
Studies have shown that nearly one in three women in the United States will become a victim of spousal abuse during her lifetime. It is the single most common cause of injury to women ages 15 to 44. However, while female partners are the most likely to suffer from domestic violence, the gender gap is not nearly as wide as most people think.
Domestic violence occurs in both heterosexual and same-sex couples. It is not only limited to spouses, but can happen to any household member, such as if adult children abuse their elderly parents. When someone violates the Domestic Violence Act, they are liable for a criminal complaint and may be given a temporary restraining order.
Signs of domestic abuse are often visible before the behavior becomes extreme and results in criminal acts. Such signs must be addressed immediately for the wellbeing of the victim’s physical and mental health. If you or someone close to you is a victim of domestic violence, it is best to engage an experienced family law attorney to help handle the case.
Common Signs of Domestic Violence
The signs of domestic violence can usually be seen through one’s behavior. If you see any of these behaviors in your partners or household members, you should not hesitate to get help. They include:
- Anger management problems: Unpredictable and volatile temper.
- Jealousy issues: Excessive possessiveness, limiting victim’s access to other people, or restricting phone or computer use.
- Economic abuse: Limiting victim’s financial independence through restricting access to finances.
- Emotional abuse: Hurting victim emotionally through name calling, criticizing and threatening.
- Sexual abuse: Forcing victim to engage in sex or intimate physical contact.
- Physical abuse: Hurting victim physically by hitting, slapping or more.
- Property destruction: Destroying victim’s belongings.
- Child abuse: Threatening to harm or harming a child to gain emotional control over their parent.
From a legal perspective, the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act provides that the following crimes – when committed against a child or domestic partner – constitute criminally punishable forms of domestic violence:
- Terroristic threats
- Criminal restraint
- False imprisonment
- Sexual assault
- Criminal sexual contact
- Criminal mischief
- Criminal trespass
Representation for Individuals Wrongfully Accused of Domestic Violence
If you have been wrongfully accused of domestic violence or spousal abuse, it is important to take action to set the record straight. Not only can a false allegation of domestic violence affect your rights in a divorce, but it can also lead to criminal charges which can affect your life long after your sentence is over. We have experience representing non-violent spouses in overcoming wrongful accusations of domestic abuse and avoiding unfair treatment and prosecution. Depending on the circumstances, we can seek to establish that false accusations were lodged maliciously, that your spouse or partner was actually the aggressor, or that both individuals participated equally in the confrontation.
Do You have a Domestic Violence Safety Plan?
If you are facing immediate danger, you should call the police or go to the police station nearest to you. Take your children along with you if you have any. If you feel that your self-esteem and confidence has suffered because of your relationship, and that you are afraid of your partner or household member, it is a telltale sign that you should get help. Approach someone you trust to talk about your problems if you feel you are getting abused in your household.
Victims of spousal abuse and violence often have difficulty acknowledging the severity of their situation. Whether out of denial, fear, embarrassment, or uncertainty where to turn, domestic violence victims often wait far longer than they should to come forward. At Romanowski Law Offices, we can help you understand and take control of your situation so that you can put an end to the abuse. We will take action quickly to help you by:
- Seeking a protective order.
- Enforcing existing protective orders.
- Facilitating separation or filing for divorce.
- Obtaining Separate Maintenance so that you can pay your bills after moving out of an abusive household.
- Modifying custody rights, visitation rights, and parenting plans.
- Relocating out of state with your child.
- Using the divorce process to protect you and your children from further abuse.
Our family law attorneys have decades of experience in serious family law matters. Curtis Romanowski has served on the U.S. Navy Regional Medical Center Domestic Violence Subcommittee and received intensive training from The Family Institute of New Jersey. If you need help extricating yourself from an abusive relationship, you can trust our team to help you transition into the life you deserve.
What About Same-Sex and Familial Domestic Violence?
Of course, while much of the discourse around domestic violence focuses on husbands and wives, same-sex couples and other family members face abuse issues as well. Domestic violence is not unique to heterosexual couples. However, even in these other contexts, male victims often face the same stigma and preconceptions discussed above.
Friends and family of those who are suffering domestic violence often do not know how they can help, and sometimes have difficulties comprehending why the victim does not want to take action. One of the best ways to help someone who is getting abused domestically is to help them recognize the obstacles they are facing in reporting the abuser to relevant authorities. Providing information and support is the best way to help the victim overcome mental barriers and seek help.
Consult with a Domestic Violence Lawyer at Romanowski Law Offices Today
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, an experienced attorney specializing in family law will be able to help with the case. Attorney Romanowski has been selected as the Nation’s Top One Percent by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel, and is named “Top 10” in New Jersey by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys. As such, you can be assured that Attorney Romanowski is one of the most reliable and experienced family law attorneys around, and will be able to help with domestic violence cases.
We offer expert consultations and have offices conveniently located in both Monmouth and central New Jersey. To schedule a time to speak with Curtis, call (732) 242-4564 or contact us online today.