When any parent is going through a divorce, it’s always an incredibly difficult time for the family involved. It’s made much harder for everyone, however, when an ex-wife makes a father the target of a phony abuse allegation during that process. And this is an increasingly-common divorce scenario.
There are many reasons why a mother might decide to punish the father of her kids in this way, but the main one is that: whilst a father is trying to figure out how to fight a restraining order, he’ll likely make a mistake in the general custody court case. Or run out of funds trying to defend himself on two fronts. Or simply cave from the pressure of it all.
This article has been written to explain to you one important fact, and it’s one that you should be clear on:
Tens of thousands of American fathers are fighting a restraining order every year. And every year, tens of thousands of them win custody of their children.
I’m going to give you some practical tips that helped me win custody of my son when I was fighting a restraining order so that you can learn from my experience during your legal struggle.
Tip 1: An expensive lawyer isn’t always a good enough defense.
When I started out fighting a restraining order during my divorce, I was in the lucky position that I just went with the first available family lawyer I could find without having to worry too much about the costs. But even I was shocked when I saw some of the invoices coming through because the service I received was terrible.
My lawyer failed to explain some very important facts about the way family divorce cases are handled by the system when it comes to fighting a restraining order at the same time – and throwing more money at him or she isn’t going to give them the experience the case needs. Make sure you get someone with specific knowledge about your type of case if you choose to hire a lawyer at all (I ended up defending myself in the final year of my court case).
Tip 2: Keep a journal, or two.
You might be wondering why there’s the “two” in this tip. I’ll explain because it’s one of the best tips you’ll ever be given about how to fight a restraining order.
The first journal is for practical reasons. Keep a journal of the dates, times, witnesses, and location of any incident or communication that may influence your defense. Keep it factual and to the point. Fighting a restraining order isn’t about fighting dirty, it’s about playing within the rules and being as smart as your ex. If she calls to demand maintenance payments after filing the restraining order, log it, report it, use it as evidence – she can’t be “in fear of harm” if she insists on hassling you for more money, can she?
The second journal is for your purposes. I found it helpful to write down some thoughts about the case when I was fighting a restraining order, and it helped to alleviate some of the anger and frustration I felt.
REMEMBER, though, that if your ex ever finds out about the journal that it could be subpoenaed by the court as evidence by her – so make sure you keep it safe. You should also begin every journal entry with the following words so that the record becomes “privileged communication” and isn’t acceptable for your ex to call for in court.
“To My Attorney, [his or her name]”
Tip 3: Never give up hope.
Your kids will only ever grow up once, and they are relying on you to make the right moves so that you can be there for them. You CAN win and fighting a restraining order and false protection orders just take time and patience – persistence is the key to winning custody of your children.