Abusive Relationships and Domestic Violence Laws

This past year’s news coverage of domestic violence and the National Football League has brought domestic violence to the forefront in our society. Unfortunately, for all too many women and men in the United States, domestic violence is always in the forefront because it is a fact of their daily lives.

While it is impossible to know exactly how many people suffer from domestic violence due to the often hidden nature of this violence, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence estimates that one out of every three women and one out of every four men have experienced some sort of physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime. While they may not always provide adequate solutions, there are laws to battle this epidemic.

The Illinois Domestic Violence Act

The main law in Illinois that addresses domestic violence is the Illinois Domestic Violence Act. This law governs abuse by what it calls “family or household members.” This group can include spouses, former spouses, blood relatives, relatives by marriage or prior marriage, people who have (or allegedly have) a child in common, people who share a blood relationship through a child, people who have been dating or who have been engaged, caregivers, and people with disabilities and their personal assistants. Additionally, the Act deals provides for orders of protection.

Orders of Protection

Orders of protection are designed to protect a few different groups of people, and one of those groups is made up of those who have been abused by a family or household member. A petition for one of these orders can be filed on its own or with another type of action like a divorce petition. There are no filing fees for filing an order of protection. These cases are supposed to be handled as quickly as possible. If an order is granted, the court can order the abusive person to stay away from the petitioning person. An order of protection proceeding can also be used to decide issues like child custody and who is entitled to remain in a family home on a short-term basis until an issue can be worked out later in a more permanent proceeding like a divorce.

Call Sullivan Taylor, Gumina & Palmer, P.C.

If you are a victim of domestic violence, an Illinois family law attorney at Sullivan Taylor, Gumina & Palmer, P.C. can help. Call us today at 630-665-7676. We can assist with restraining orders, child custody disputes, and a host of other legal battles that may come along with leaving this type of relationship. While your local prosecutor will be the one responsible for making decisions when it comes to criminal charges, we can help with the legal issues related to domestic violence.