This is the next article in our series on the handling of emergency child custody cases in Dayton, Ohio. Our last article discussed how discovery can be used to show that your case is an “emergency.” It is important to understand that judges typically will not accept unsupported claims that your son or daughter is facing danger. Such claims must be supported by evidence and the discovery process allows for such evidence to be acquired. It is, therefore, important that you retain an attorney who is experienced in conducting discovery. In this article we will discuss another important topic – how false claims can impact such matters. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance, contact our office to speak with a lawyer.
It is, unfortunately, not uncommon for one parent to make false claims in an attempt to gain more time with their child. Such claims can range from allegations of violence, abuse, or neglect to accusations of drug use or alcoholism. Making false accusations, however, can result in the accused parent receiving increased time with the child and the accusing parent seeing their share of custody reduced. This is due to the fact that in Ohio, like in other states, a Judge will consider the willingness of a parent to foster a relationship between their counterpart and the child. It almost goes without saying that making false accusations, in an effort to reduce the other parent’s time with the child, is counter to the fostering of a meaningful relationship. This is why a falsely accused parent may find custody changed in their favor.
There are many ways in which a parent, who is falsely accused of endangering the child, can disprove the allegations. The approach which such a parent takes will depend on the specific facts of the case. Suppose a parent makes a claim to Children Services only to have CS issue a letter saying that they believe the accusations to be unsubstantiated. Under these circumstances, establishing the truth in Family Court is relatively straightforward. In cases that do not involve criminal charges or CS allegations, however, it may be necessary to present evidence showing that the claims are without merit. If, for example, a parent falsely accused their counterpart of being an alcoholic, the accused parent can bring a body of evidence to their defense. This evidence may include a criminal record showing no DUI arrests, proof that the accused parent has held the same job long-term, and bank records showing that there is no excessive spending at bars. The type of evidence which a parent may wish to present will always depend on the facts of the case.
An important point to stress is that you should contact an experienced child custody lawyer immediately if false allegations are being levied against you. It is understandable that one may not take the matter seriously. A parent may feel that the situation is ridiculous, and they will simply “explain to the Judge” that the allegations are false. In any custody case, however, the Judge’s sole concern will be for the best interests of the child and the court will err on the side of caution. If you do not give the matter the attention it deserves, the Court may give credence to the claims.
Our Dayton attorneys take pride in the level of service they provide to those in our community. We are experienced in handling such matters and we are ready to assist you. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation. We also assist parents in Beavercreek, Centerville, Clayton, Eaton, Englewood, Fairborn, Franklin, Harrison Township, Huber Heights, Kettering, Oakwood, Lebanon, Miami Township, Miamisburg, Piqua, Riverside, Springboro, Springfield, Tipp City, Trotwood, Troy, Vandalia, Waynesville, Washington Township, West Carrollton, Yellow Springs, and Xenia.