McFarling Law Group has extensive experience in representing victims of domestic violence and defending against claims of domestic violence. Whether you are in a child custody case, divorce or proceeding for an order of protection, McFarling Law Group can help.
In Nevada, domestic violence is defined by a criminal statute:
NRS 33.018 Acts which constitute domestic violence.
1. Domestic violence occurs when a person commits one of the following acts against or upon the person’s spouse or former spouse, any other person to whom the person is related by blood or marriage, any other person with whom the person has had or is having a dating relationship, any other person with whom the person has a child in common, the minor child of any of those persons, the person’s minor child or any other person who has been appointed the custodian or legal guardian for the person’s minor child:
(a) A battery.
(b) An assault.
(c) Compelling the other person by force or threat of force to perform an act from which the other person has the right to refrain or to refrain from an act which the other person has the right to perform.
(d) A sexual assault.
(e) A knowing, purposeful or reckless course of conduct intended to harass the other person. Such conduct may include, but is not limited to:
(5) Destruction of private property.
(6) Carrying a concealed weapon without a permit.
(7) Injuring or killing an animal.
(f) A false imprisonment.
(g) Unlawful entry of the other person’s residence, or forcible entry against the other person’s will if there is a reasonably foreseeable risk of harm to the other person from the entry.
2. As used in this section, “dating relationship” means frequent, intimate associations primarily characterized by the expectation of affectional or sexual involvement. The term does not include a casual relationship or an ordinary association between persons in a business or social context.
How Domestic Violence Affects a Child Custody Case
In Nevada, there is a presumption that a perpetrator of domestic violence should not even have joint custody. Further, if the court finds there was domestic violence, the Court is required to make findings that its custody or visitation arrangement adequately protects the child and the parent or other victim of domestic violence.
NRS 125C.230 Presumption concerning custody when court determines that parent or other person seeking custody of child is perpetrator of domestic violence.
1. Except as otherwise provided in NRS 125C.210 and 125C.220, a determination by the court after an evidentiary hearing and finding by clear and convincing evidence that either parent or any other person seeking custody of a child has engaged in one or more acts of domestic violence against the child, a parent of the child or any other person residing with the child creates a rebuttable presumption that sole or joint custody of the child by the perpetrator of the domestic violence is not in the best interest of the child. Upon making such a determination, the court shall set forth:
(a) Findings of fact that support the determination that one or more acts of domestic violence occurred; and
(b) Findings that the custody or visitation arrangement ordered by the court adequately protects the child and the parent or other victim of domestic violence who resided with the child.
2. If after an evidentiary hearing held pursuant to subsection 1 the court determines that more than one party has engaged in acts of domestic violence, it shall, if possible, determine which person was the primary physical aggressor. In determining which party was the primary physical aggressor for the purposes of this section, the court shall consider:
(a) All prior acts of domestic violence involving any of the parties;
(b) The relative severity of the injuries, if any, inflicted upon the persons involved in those prior acts of domestic violence;
(c) The likelihood of future injury;
(d) Whether, during the prior acts, one of the parties acted in self-defense; and
(e) Any other factors that the court deems relevant to the determination.
Ê In such a case, if it is not possible for the court to determine which party is the primary physical aggressor, the presumption created pursuant to subsection 1 applies to each of the parties. If it is possible for the court to determine which party is the primary physical aggressor, the presumption created pursuant to subsection 1 applies only to the party determined by the court to be the primary physical aggressor.
3. As used in this section, “domestic violence” means the commission of any act described in NRS 33.018.
Methods of Protecting a Child from Domestic Violence
GENERAL Ways to protect a child from domestic violence
- limit conflict between the parents
- limit the child witnessing conflict between the parents
- limit the child witnessing the perpetrator abuse in a subsequent relationship
- limit contact or ability for the perpetrator to abuse the child
SPECIFIC methods of protection
- Using communication tools between parents such as OurFamilyWizard and TalkingParents
- Mutual Behavior orders
- Parallel parenting
- Having no in person exchanges between the parents
- Having exchanges on a school day where one parent drops off at school and the other parent picks up
- Having a third party facilitate exchanges
- Using text and seat belt rule for exchanges
- At exchanges order that no one gets out of the vehicle except the child
- Having visitation limitations
- Having supervision at a facility like Donna’s House
- Having supervision by the co-parent
- Having supervision by a third party family or friend
- Having supervision by a paid supervisor
- Having visitation only with the parent, no third parties present
- Having limited duration visits – only fun amount of time
- Limiting visits to no overnights
Orders of Protection
A person who is in fear of violence may apply for an order of protection. If the parties are family members, the application can be done through the family court.
Experienced and Sympathetic Attorneys at Your Side
The most recent Nevada Court of Appeals decision helping to protect victims of domestic violence was a case where McFarling Law Group represented the domestic violence victim in a child custody case. McFarling Law Group takes domestic violence seriously and knows that victims of domestic violence need a voice in the courts more than anyone.
At McFarling Law Group, our lawyers are experienced in all family law matters, including domestic violence issues. If you would like to schedule a consultation with an experienced family lawyer in Las Vegas, NV area, call our office at 702 766 6671.