You’ve been accused of domestic violence, but you want to retain custody of your child. In Nevada, a domestic violence charge can make it difficult to get custody of your children. However, you can improve your situation when working with a criminal defense attorney.
Do you need a domestic violence lawyer in Henderson, Nevada?Contact Marchiano Law today.
Nevada has two forms of child custody: physical and legal. Physical custody enables a parent to live with the child. Legal custody allows a parent to make decisions that affect the child’s life. In many cases, both parents will be awarded some degree of legal custody. For physical custody, the court will grant full custody to one parent or joint custody between the parents.
The court decides which parent will have physical custody and the type of legal custody that is best for the child. The factors that the court will consider include:
For the safety and well-being of the child, the court will determine if the parent seeking physical custody of the child has a history of domestic violence. If there is an allegation of abuse, the court will hold a hearing with evidence to determine whether the domestic abuse allegations are valid. If the evidence from the initial hearing is strong enough for a case, the judge will conclude there is “clear and convincing evidence.”
This signifies that the allegations are likely to be true, but doesn’t convict anyone of a crime. The person facing the domestic violence allegations can present evidence against the presumption and assert that having custody of the child would be for the child’s best interest.
The court will look at the evidence on both sides of the allegation and the judge will make a decision. The judge must provide evidence and findings that support the custody and visitation decision, which must protect the child, parent, or other domestic violence victims.
In Nevada, it is presumed that joint custody is not a safe option for the child when there are domestic violence accusations. The court may rule abuse occurred without a conviction and base the decision solely on testimonies.
Below are the four types of evidence the court uses:
A criminal attorney will be able to obtain the best evidence to refute your abuse accusation and produce evidence that aligns with court rules.
Though the court will give custody to the parent who hasn’t engaged in domestic violence, there are instances where both parents are accused of domestic abuse. In this case, the court will give child custody to the parent who is least likely to commit future acts of violence and who didn’t initiate the violence.
The court will consider these factors if both parents are accused of domestic violence:
In these circumstances, the judge will try to determine which parent is the primary physical aggressor and grant custody to the other parent. In cases where custody with neither parent would be in the child’s best interest, the child will be turned over to Nevada Social Services.
Being charged with domestic violence can hurt your chances of obtaining custody of your child. Nevada law requires a court procedure whereby either parent can prevail with strong enough facts and evidence. Having the counsel of an experienced Nevada criminal defense attorney who specializes in child custody and domestic violence cases will give you the best chance of rebutting your domestic abuse allegation and retaining custody of your child. If you’re accused of domestic abuse and are in a child custody dispute, contact Marchiano Law and we will help you unite with your child.