Domestic violence is never part of a healthy marriage. Individuals who face domestic violence can suffer physical and emotional scars that impact them for years, possibly for the rest of their lives. If you are facing domestic violence, you need to end your marriage for your own safety.
The Different Types of Domestic Violence
Michigan law defines domestic violence as any of the following behaviors directed at a current or former spouse, an individual with whom one has a child in common, a current or former dating partner, or another current or former household member:
- Physical harm, such as hitting, pushing, kicking, or using weapons to inflict injury;
- Locking the victim out of the home;
- Denying medical care, food, or water to the victim;
- Restricting the victim from earning and using money;
- Taking control of the victim’s financial resources;
- Engaging in sex with the victim without his or her consent;
- Belittling and insulting the victim; and
- Emotionally manipulating the victim.
If you are facing any type of domestic violence at the hands of your partner, contact the Domestic Violence Hotline for help getting out.
Protecting yourself from Harm with a Personal Protection Order
After you leave an abusive household, you can obtain a restraining order, known in Michigan as a Personal Protection Order (PPO) against your former partner to protect yourself from further abuse.
A PPO can prohibit your former partner from:
- Speaking to you or contacting you;
- Entering certain premises, such as your home or workplace;
- Owning a firearm;
- Taking your minor children if you have temporary or permanent sole custody of them;
- Access records that enable him or her to locate you or your minor children;
- Interfere with your efforts to leave your marital home or another premises with your children; and
- Engage in any other specific behaviors that compromise your liberty and safety.
You can obtain a PPO from the circuit court of the county where you reside. Within 24 hours of filing your PPO petition, a judge can choose to approve or deny it without a hearing or the other party present. This is known as an ex parte PPO. In order to have your ex parte PPO approved, you must show the court that you are in danger of facing harm. An ex parte PPO is valid for six months. When your PPO is close to expiring, you can file a motion to have it extended. While it is in place, your former partner can also file a motion to have it modified or terminated. This request may be approved if the court deems he or she has a good reason for the request.
Work with an Experienced Oakland County Divorce Lawyer
If you are facing domestic violence from your spouse, find a way to get yourself out of the home safely. Once you are safely away from your abuser, contact experienced divorce lawyer Paul Tafelski to schedule your free legal consultation and start working on your divorce. Our firm can also help you with any additional legal issues you are facing, such as stalking or harassment from your former partner.