If you and your partner are splitting up, you’re likely not on the best of terms. If you have a child together, you may be worried about access to your child after the relationship ends.
For instance, maybe you believe your ex is willing to lie about abuse or domestic violence to get an Order of Protection against you. They will then use this to attempt to get sole custody. All you want is to share custody so that you can still be a part of your child’s life, but you’re worried that your ex will stop at nothing to prevent that, and it’s all being done out of spite.
Why do people do this?
The main reason this happens, of course, is that your ex just wants to control the situation. They may be mad at you or determined to make sure you never see your child again. They’re just escalating an already emotional situation.
Another reason that people choose orders of protection, though, is that temporary ones are fairly easy to get with little proof. The court tries to err on the side of protecting those who need it. As noble as this is, it can backfire when someone decides to take advantage of the system.
Furthermore, courts no long show preference to one parent or the other in child custody cases. Sole custody is only used when absolutely necessary, and the goal is generally to use joint custody. This makes it harder for someone to get sole custody, and they may decide their only hope is to manufacture a situation in which sole custody does seem necessary. One of the main ways to do that is through allegations of abuse, as the court always looks out for the child’s best interests.
What can you do?
A situation like this is distressing and difficult. You will worry about your future, and you need to make sure that you understand all of the legal options you have, both to fight these untrue allegations and to make sure you still get to see your child.