As many parents who are going through a child custody battle know, the court bases its decision on custody solely on what is in the child’s best interest, not on what is in either of the parent’s best interests. As such, a child custody lawyer knows that an abusive parent’s chances of receiving custody are exceedingly slim.
Due to the enormous pressure and tension that parents are put under during custody disputes, sometimes they will go to great lengths to receive a beneficial court decision, and this includes telling lies about the other parent. These fabrications may merely be that the other party is a lousy parent because they are absent-minded or that they are not as invested in the child as the other parent because they frequently miss the child’s soccer games. Or, the lies may be more damaging, such as alleging that the other parent is physically or emotionally abusive towards the child.
How Common Are False Allegations of Child Abuse?
There are very few allegations of sexual assault that are false or baseless in nature. In fact, of all reported cases of sexual assault in the United States, false accusations only account for between two to 10 percent of all cases, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
However, when it comes to allegations of child abuse, there may be much more room for skepticism. One study found that in roughly half of their studied cases, child abuse was substantiated, while in the other half the abuse was unsubstantiated. Unsubstantiated evidence for child abuse is providing “insufficient evidence to determine whether or not a crime occurred,” according to one major study. What this means is that courts may be prone to believing the accuser if there is sufficient evidence that child abuse occurred, while the court may not take into consideration alleged abuse if it is unsubstantiated.
Fighting Back Against False Allegations
For parents who are going through a divorce and have been falsely accused of child abuse, it can seem like the world is unraveling around them. How can you prove that the abuse did not happen? After all, it is impossible to prove a negative. Fortunately, the burden of proof should rest with the accuser, not the accused. This does not always happen, however, and your chances of being railroaded by the other parent increases if you remain legally unrepresented. With the guidance of an experienced child custody lawyer, you can fight these wrongful allegations and seek your right to parent your child.
Contact a Family Law Firm for Legal Assistance
If you have children and are going through a divorce, make sure your parental rights are protected. Call an experienced attorney, like a child custody lawyer from a law firm like The Law Office of Daniel E. Stuart, P.A.