If you are going through a divorce and you have been a victim of domestic violence, it is important that you take action to protect yourself and your children. The best course of action if you want to seek relief from harassment or abuse from your divorcing spouse is to seek an order of protection, otherwise known as a restraining order.

A restraining order gives you legal protection from harassment and abuse by ordering your spouse to keep a distance from you and your children, both physically and through communication such as texting and calling. This will help you to feel safe with the knowledge that your divorcing spouse will be subject to prosecution if they break these rules.

How can a protective order affect the course of a divorce?

A protective order is, in some way, an acknowledgment that a person has been accused of domestic violence or harassment. This means that when working through divorce issues such as alimony and child custody arrangements, the allegation of abuse will be taken into account.

How could the protective order affect child custody?

The circumstances of the protective order will be evaluated by the child custody courts. For example, the child custody courts will want to know the exact circumstances surrounding the allegations of domestic violence. They will want to know whether the child was present during any of the abuse, and whether any violence or abuse was directed toward the child.

How could the protective order affect alimony decisions?

Usually, alimony calculations are based on many different factors. Considerations can take into account financial aspects of the marriage, such as the contribution that each spouse made financially to the household. However, the presence of a protective order will likely be noted when alimony calculations are taking place.

If you are being abused by your partner, you should make yourself aware of your right to seek protection from abuse. You have the right to do this even when a divorce is pending, but you should be fully aware of how this order of protection could affect the course of the divorce process in Colorado.