In many ways, domestic violence in Tulsa, Oklahoma is still not well understood.
There are still some people who believe only a woman can be the victim of domestic violence. This is not true. Men, too, can be victimized through physical, sexual, or emotional abuse. They have the right to protect themselves from this treatment. It is especially important for fathers to stop domestic violence, as it puts their children in danger.
Do not face domestic violence on your own. Call 918-986-7724 to schedule your consultation with a Tulsa fathers’ rights attorney. I have helped many fathers protect themselves and their children from abuse by the other parent.
How Can I Protect My Children?
Whenever you or your children are in immediate danger, one obvious option is to call 911 right away. Police can offer immediate assistance in a crisis situation, but there could be unexpected consequences.
The courts can offer certain protections, too, but these take time.
However, trying to manage the situation on your own can make things worse. You could appear to be the aggressor.
Yet, contacting the police can also leave you or your children in jeopardy. The other spouse can make allegations that could lead to your arrest.
Oklahoma DHS could determine the situation requires emergency removal of children from both parents.
Some parents expose themselves to additional legal risks, such as discovery of a warrant from a forgotten traffic ticket.
Illegal substances the other spouse keeps in the household without your knowledge could be attributed to you, until you eventually prove otherwise in court.
Leaving the scene is often a best option. If you can stay with friends or family or check into a hotel overnight, the situation can de-escalate and you may have time to contact an attorney.
If the violence is only directed at the father and there is no threat of violence to the children, then leaving the residence and calling the police shortly thereafter might be the best approach.
Once you and your children are safe, you can access the protections of the court.
A protective order is often the first step. Oklahoma statutes allow the court to issue a protective order if it finds that the petitioner is in immediate danger of domestic abuse, stalking, or harassment.
Minor children can also be protected by an order filed by one parent against the other. Thus, a protective order can become a bar to one parent having any visitation with the children.
The court must hold a hearing on protective orders within 14 days — whether or not minor children are included in the order.
Modifying Child Custody After Domestic Violence
After a protective order has been issued, it is important to have a safety plan. Know where you can go for safety if your former partner shows up at your house. Have emergency funds and contact information available.
While a protective order is an important legal tool, it is ultimately a piece of paper. You must be able to protect yourself in the event that an angry former partner chooses to ignore the order for protection, or if you determine a protective order might be counterproductive.
Petitioning for a protective order can prompt the other spouse to do the same. Courts might consider parents with mutual protective orders to be conflicted, and issue custody orders that offer neither parent an advantage nor a say in what happens to their children.
Whether or not a protective order is involved, it might be necessary to go back to the family court and revisit your existing custody order. This can include the determination of joint versus sole custody. It can also include the visitation schedule.
The court might order the abuser to go through anger management classes before resuming visitation with the children. Some judges might order supervised visitation until the abusive parent can prove that he or she has corrected the abusive behaviors. These are just some of the tools a family court can use to protect a child from further abuse by a parent.
Call a Tulsa Men’s Rights Lawyer Today
You don’t have to put up with domestic violence, and you don’t have to face an abuser alone. Call 918-986-7724 or contact us online to schedule your consultation with a Tulsa fathers’ rights lawyer. With the skill of an experienced attorney and the authority of family court orders, you can protect yourself and your children from many types of domestic violence.