Category: Domestic Violence

Oriol Law Firm, St. Tammany Parish Lawyer in Terra Bella
Child CustodyDivorceDomestic ViolenceFamily Law
Your Guide to a Successful Divorce: Avoid These 5 Common Mistakes

Your Guide to a Successful Divorce: Avoid These 5 Common Mistakes

Divorce is a monumental process that often has lifelong consequences which means that making informed decisions is paramount. The divorce journey can be emotionally taxing and legally complex, and financially challenging, so approaching it with careful consideration and expert guidance is imperative. Here, we delve into five all-too-common mistakes that individuals often make during divorce proceedings, along with tips on how to avoid them.

Remember, every divorce case is unique, and seeking guidance from a qualified attorney is crucial to avoid these mistakes and achieve the best possible outcome. To ensure you’re on the right track, consider scheduling a consultation by calling our office at 985-845-2227.

  1. Insufficient Planning

As the old saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” One of the biggest blunders in divorce proceedings is embarking on the journey without proper planning which can lead to unfavorable outcomes and prolonged disputes. To steer clear of this pitfall, take the time to understand your rights, gather all pertinent financial documents, and consult with an experienced attorney before initiating the divorce process. A well-laid plan sets the tone for a smoother divorce journey.

  1. Lack of Communication

Communication breakdowns between spouses escalate conflicts and hinder progress in divorce negotiations. Open lines of communication are especially critical when discussing matters like child custody, property division, and financial arrangements. Prioritize effective communication to ensure a fair and mutually acceptable settlement which can save thousands in costs and years of stress.

  1. Neglecting Emotional Well-being

Divorce affects emotional well-being, potentially impacting decision-making, and overall mental health. It’s crucial to seek emotional support from friends, family, or professional counselors to navigate this challenging period. By prioritizing self-care, you can approach negotiations with a clearer mind and make decisions that align with your long-term best interests.

  1. Hiding Facts from your Attorney

Attempting to conceal facts or withholding information from your attorney during divorce proceedings is a grave error. Full transparency with your attorney is necessary to get the best possible representation and outcome.  Your attorney cannot properly advise and represent you without all the facts.

  1. Rushing the Process

Rushing through the divorce process or agreeing to a quick settlement might seem like a quick escape during the emotional upheaval. However, making impulsive decisions can lead to long-term repercussions. Take the time to thoroughly evaluate each aspect of the divorce with your attorney and consult with other financial professionals when necessary to ensure that the final settlement is fair, reasonable, and aligned with your long-term goals.

In conclusion, divorce is a significant life transition that requires careful consideration and thoughtful decision-making. Avoiding these common mistakes—insufficient planning, lack of communication, neglecting emotional well-being, hiding facts from your attorney, and rushing the process—can pave the way for a more favorable outcome. 

Remember, seeking guidance from a qualified attorney is pivotal in ensuring your divorce journey is as smooth and successful as possible. To begin your journey toward a well-informed and favorable divorce, schedule a consultation by calling our office at 985-845-2227. Your future deserves the best possible outcome from these difficult circumstances.

Domestic ViolenceFamily Law
Surviving Domestic Violence: Should you file for a Protective Order?

Are you in an abusive relationship? Does your spouse abuse or threaten you and/or your children? Are you constantly planning to get away, but feel crippled by the fear that your significant other might come after you?

A protective order is a tool that you may want to use to keep yourself and your family safe. However, it can be tricky to evaluate whether you’d qualify for one, or what the process to obtain a protective order is. Sometimes, law enforcement agencies or child protective services will suggest that you apply for a protective order in lieu of any actual agency action. But this is not always the answer. Here are some tidbits you might find helpful:

  1. What is a Protective Order?

    Most people use terms like “TRO, PO, and Civil Restraining Order” interchangeably, yet they are all a little bit different. Protective orders can be filed under several statutes. The most common protective order is filed under La. R.S. 46: 2131, also known as the Domestic Abuse Assistance Act. This law provides assistance for survivors of domestic violence, and describes domestic abuse as “including, but not limited to, physical or sexual abuse.”

    Typically, while it can and does vary depending on the jurisdiction you’re in, the Court is generally looking for instances of serious physical abuse. This usually falls under categories such as slapping, punching, choking, kicking, etc., or threats to cause seriously body harm or death to someone.

  2. Who can apply for a protective order under La. R.S. 46:2131?

    Under the statute, only family and household members with a sufficient relationship can apply. Family members, as defined in La. R.S. 46: 2132, include “spouses, former spouses, parents and children, stepparents and stepchildren, foster parents and foster children.”

    Household members means any person living in the same residence with the defendant and who is involved or has been involved in a sexual or intimate relationship with the defendant.

  3. Where can I file for a protective order?

    If you decide to file for an Order of Protection, you will typically go to the clerk of court. This can be:

    • In the parish where the marital household is located

    • In the parish where the defendant lives

    • In the parish where the abuse happened

    • In the parish where the person seeking the protective order lives

    • In the parish where an action for divorce could be brought, pursuant to La. Code of Civil Procedure Article 3941(a).

  4. What happens next?

    Once you go to the clerk of court, they should issue you a blank form titled “Petition for Protection from Abuse.” It will have a series of blank lines for you to fill in your information. You can choose to keep your address confidential. There will be a page where you will be able to fill in “Most Recent Incident,“ and “Past Incidents of Abuse.” It is very important that you be as specific as possible about the instances of abuse. When you get to court, your testimony will be limited to what you put on this piece of paper. Take your time and ask for extra paper if you need it!
    Your petition will then be handed to a duty judge, and they will either grant or deny a temporary restraining order. Whether they grant or deny the temporary order, this will still be set for a hearing at the courthouse, usually within 30 days. Even if your temporary order is granted, that does not mean that you will prevail at the hearing.

    Whether your temporary order is granted or denied, the Courthouse will call and let you know, and will also send you notice of your hearing date. At this hearing, the Commissioner/Hearing Officer or Judge will determine whether or not to grant a protective order for anywhere from 3-18 months.

    This hearing is important. Call a lawyer, at the very least for a consultation. There are serious consequences that can result from having a protective order issued against you.