The Consequences of a False Domestic Violence Charge
Domestic violence laws exist to protect individuals from physical abuse by a spouse or partner. Unfortunately, many people use domestic violence laws to commit what amounts to court-ordered abuse against their ex-partner. Men are frequently the victims of this type of attack, as some women choose to make false domestic violence allegations in order to gain special legal benefits or protections.
Why Would Someone Make a False Domestic Abuse Allegation?
A domestic violence complaint is a powerful tool for revenge. An angry wife or girlfriend may tell the police she was the victim of domestic violence just to force her partner to leave the house. Indeed, a court may order the man to leave the household even if he is the lawful owner of the property.
In some cases, a domestic violence charge can even get a wrongfully accused man kicked out of the country. Under federal law, a non-citizen convicted of domestic violence or a “crime of moral turpitude” is subject to deportation. It does not matter if the man is a legal immigrant in possession of a green card or a temporary visa. On the other hand, a non-citizen woman who falsely claims domestic abuse may receive preferential status in applying for legal immigration status.
False Allegations and Divorce
A more common scenario for a false domestic violence allegation involves a woman who wants to obtain a favorable financial or child custody settlement from an estranged spouse or domestic partner. Florida courts are more likely to award sole custody of the children and a greater share of marital property to a wife who claims domestic abuse. Even the threat of bringing such a claim may convince a man to sign away his legal rights just to avoid a trial.
Why False Domestic Violence Allegations Work
Despite the fact many domestic violence allegations turn out to be false, Florida judges, prosecutors, and police still have not figured out that some women lie in order to manipulate the system. Indeed, many law enforcement officials operate under the assumption that the accuser is always telling the truth. As a result, men accused of domestic violence are effectively denied of their rights to equal protection and due process under law.
There is also little disincentive for women not to fabricate a domestic abuse charge. While filing a false police report and lying in court—i.e., perjury—are criminal offenses, Florida prosecutors rarely bring charges against women who lie about domestic abuse. Conversely, these same prosecutors may refuse to drop a domestic violence charge against a man, even if the woman recants her story, for fear of being perceived by the press as “too soft” on abusers.
Have You Been Falsely Accused of Domestic Violence?
The bottom line is that no man can afford to take even the threat of domestic violence allegations lightly. If you are facing domestic abuse charges it is imperative you seek out immediate legal assistance. A Miami domestic violence defense attorney can help protect your legal rights. Contact the Law Office of Julia Kefalinos today if you need to speak with an attorney right away.