What to Do if You Are Falsely Accused of Abuse During Divorce

 Posted on May 21, 2024 in Divorce Issues

Fathers' rights divorce attorneyA YouGov poll in 2020 found that over 20 million Americans reported having been falsely accused of abuse. These allegations included domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault, and other forms of abuse. The survey also revealed that:

  • Females were reported to be the accusers in 62% of cases.

  • Nearly a third of the time, these false allegations were made during a child custody dispute.

In other words, dads are disproportionately at risk of being falsely accused of abuse in a divorce.

Once such allegations are made, they are likely to upend your life until you can clear your name with the help of a skilled divorce attorney. Accusations of abuse can cost you child custody, fines, and/or jail time.

Besides hiring a great divorce attorney who fights passionately for fathers’ rights, here are a few things to do if you are falsely accused of abuse in a divorce.

Gather Evidence

If you are falsely accused of abuse or feel you may soon be falsely accused of abuse, immediately begin gathering evidence, such as:

  • Texts, emails, social media posts, and any other communications between you and the other party

  • Witnesses who would be willing to testify to your character and/or prove that you did not commit the abuse in question

  • Any other evidence that may help, such as clothing, photographs, or other objects

Once you have gathered this evidence, send it to your attorney so he or she can begin building your defense.


Any formal allegation of abuse will trigger an investigation by authorities, such as the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS) and perhaps law enforcement. The best thing you can do is cooperate with the investigation. DCFS will be analyzing several factors in their investigation, and your behavior is one of them. Your cooperation will help prevent them from building a negative profile of you that can be used to paint you in court as an abusive husband or father.

Comply With Court Orders

Until you clear your name, a court may take certain measures that can be frustrating. If a judge feels it is necessary, he or she may issue an order of protection, such as a temporary restraining order, against you. The order might even bar you from entering the family home or your child’s school.

As hurtful and humiliating as the order may be, your best course of action is to comply. Failure to obey a court order can damage your case significantly.

Contact a Skilled Fathers’ Rights Divorce Attorney

False allegations of abuse can damage many aspects of your life. The key to fighting such accusations is an experienced divorce attorney who understands what the courts and DCFS are looking for. Remember that time is of the essence — the sooner you can dispel the allegations, the sooner you and your child can get on with your lives. Find an aggressive divorce lawyer today to start building a strong defense.

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