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Going through a divorce can be a tense and anxiety-inducing experience. Even when a marriage ends amicably, the dissolution still tends to take a toll on separating spouses. It’s no surprise that a divorce due to abuse is a process typically fraught with a number of stressful and worrisome challenges.

If you are contemplating or preparing for divorce with an abusive spouse, it’s vital to contact an attorney with experience in these types of cases. They will file for a temporary restraining order (TRO) with the original petition for divorce. These orders are renewable every 14 days, until a longer-term measure is approved by the court.

If you have been abused or feel that you’re in danger, your attorney will follow up with a protective order enforceable by civil and criminal contempt. A final protective order stays in effect for two years. Your attorney will work with you to put a stop to the abuse and help get you your life back.

Don’t Wait to Leave and Abuser

Many spouses hesitate to divorce an abusive husband or wife because they fear retribution or other consequences of leaving their tumultuous marriage. Concerns of financial ruin, reputational damage, physical violence and other distressing factors often lead victimized spouses to remain in untenable situations for longer than they should.

Yet, most survivors of abuse will attest that leaving an abusive relationship is the first necessary step towards dramatically improving their lives. It may be necessary to divorce an abusive husband or wife if your spouse:

  • Touches you in a harmful manner
  • Attempts to limit your communication with others
  • Restricts your use to vehicles, monitors your schedule
  • Destroys property
  • Engages in other abusive behavior.

No one should have to remain in a relationship where they are being harmed or are unable to act freely.

Texas Laws to Protect Abuse Victims

If you have a partner who is physically abusive, there are Texas laws in place to help you safely escape the relationship. Similarly, if you are in an emotionally abusive relationship with a person who is controlling or who attempts to manipulate and coerce you, there are legal options to assist you with leaving. When seeking a divorce due to abuse, understanding your legal protections is key to walking away stronger and more secure once and for all.

Texas laws offer protective orders for abused spouses, which restrict contact and communication from their abusers. For mothers and fathers who are concerned that an abusive spouse may attempt to hurt or abscond with their children, supervised visitation is also available. In some instances, complete termination of parental rights might even be in order. An experienced family attorney can provide you with a detailed plan to protect yourself and your loved ones when initiating a divorce with an abusive husband or wife.

The Process of Temporary Restraining Orders (TRO)

TRO’s are filed when needed with the original petition for divorce and are renewable every 14 days. If needed, an attorney will visit the court every two weeks to extend the TRO until such time as a temporary order is in place. It can take 1-2 months to schedule a temporary order hearing before the court. After the hearing, an attorney will get at least one week to draft and review the orders. Reviewing and entering temporary orders typically take about two weeks from the hearing, and local rules in Texas require that the reviewer get 5 days to review.

You Are Not Alone

Taking steps to leave an abusive relationship can be intimidating. It is easy to feel alone in your struggle, but you are definitely not alone. Within the United States, twenty people per minute are abused by their partners. Domestic abuse is a pervasive problem that affects countless families across the spectrum.

When you have decided it is time to initiate a divorce due to abuse, the supportive team at Ramos Law is here to help. Our experienced attorneys and staff are ready to usher you through every phase of the divorce process and will make sure that you receive every protection offered by the law along the way. Contact Ramos Law today for further information on how to divorce an abusive husband or divorce an abusive wife.

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Domestic abuse is a prevalent problem within intimate and familial relationships. According to surveys, roughly 25% of divorcees cite abuse as a contributing factor to their divorce. In 25% of physical violence cases against women and nearly 15% of those against men, this abuse will escalate to severe violence leading to critical harm or injury. In its worst forms, domestic abuse may end in death as it correlates with higher rates of suicide and homicide.

Behaviors such as hitting, choking or kicking are simple to classify as abusive. But there is a more surreptitious form of domestic abuse that is often overlooked: emotional abuse.

Often, the best-case resolution for domestic emotional abuse is divorce. If the emotional abuse continues through the divorce process, your attorney can help by filing for a temporary restraining order (TRO), which is renewable every 14 days until a temporary order can be put in place with a mutual injunction to prevent such behavior.

Understanding Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse can be just as dangerous as physical abuse, and is often accompanied by or escalates to physical abuse as well. Emotional abuse includes methods that weaken and break down victims just as effectively as physical abuse, but without leaving an actual mark. Many abusers instead erode the will, esteem and support systems of their partners in order to control them.

Recognizing An Emotionally Abusive Spouse

If your spouse is emotionally abusive, you’re likely excruciatingly aware of the pain caused by that person. However, you might not be as clear on the specific methods employed by abusers to keep their victims down. Being able to identify the harmful ways by which emotional abusers break your will is helpful in keeping you strong when leaving them.

If you are seeking to divorce an emotional abuser, you will likely see a number of disturbing behaviors from your spouse kick into overdrive during the process:

Habitual Blaming

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Blame is a tactic commonly used by emotionally abusive partners. Victims of this type of abuse often find themselves at fault for everything wrong in the lives of their abusers. From minor impediments, such as a bad day at work, to overarching shortcomings like failing to achieve financial stability, emotional abusers have an uncanny knack for attributing every mishap in their lives to someone else. The victims of this type of abuse tend to be those in closest proximity to the abuser, often leaving their spouses and partners as the unfortunate recipients of blame, ire, and resentment.

For outsiders, it can be easy to question how or why anyone would ever get involved with an emotionally abusive partner who blames them for all of life’s setbacks. However, attorneys experienced in divorce law know emotional abusers can be very skilled at hiding their deep-seated personality flaws early in relationships. With blamers, their new partners are often exalted in comparison to their exes when first entering a new relationship. But with time, the abuser’s blame will shift to the new partner, and the cycle continues.

If you are always the target of blame in your marriage, understand that using divorce to resolve the emotional abuse is always an option.

Superiority Complex

Another red flag of emotional abuse is when a spouse treats their partner as inferior. Often, this process is two-fold, with the abuser both boosting themselves while putting down their partner.

An abuser with a superiority complex makes a habit of belittling their victims in order to make himself appear and feel superior. They will draw attention to his partner’s smallest flaws to make them hyper-aware of their insecurities. They will rarely miss an opportunity to embarrass or debase the person they claim to love.

When life with your spouse feels like a competition that you are constantly losing, you are likely dealing with an emotional abuser.

Entitlement

The entitled emotional abuser expects to always receive special treatment, even though such treatment is not actually earned or deserved. This type of person usually does not feel as though they must play by the rules and may feel maligned when expected to abide by the ordinary code of conduct. The entitled abuser has the mindset that everyone is indebted to them, and expects even unreasonable whims to be catered to.

Society will generally not respond positively to this sort of entitled behavior. As such, entitled emotional abusers will likely only be able to exert influence over those closest to them.

This type of emotional abuse tends to show in divorce more often, as an entitled spouse is more likely to seek a greater portion of community property than they are due.

Control

Lastly, control is the primary tool used to effectuate emotional abuse. Abusers seek to make their victims powerless. It is far easier for the abuser to coerce a victim who has no power to leave, get help or fight back. To take this power from the victim, the abuser seeks control over key aspects of the victim’s life.

One of the first means to achieve this power is by taking financial control. A person with no buying power is likely at the mercy of whoever is willing to feed, clothe and shelter them. Abusers are well aware of this fact, which is why they often make a point to control and monitor the spending within their households. This leaves their victims completely dependent.

Abusers are also known to isolate their victims from their support systems. When a person has family or friends who are willing to provide various forms of help, he or she still maintains the power to leave a bad situation. Cutting the victim off from that support system eliminates their opportunity to draw upon help. As such, emotionally abusive people seek to isolate their partners, either by alienating them from their loved ones or by moderating their communications with their network.

Controlling abusers are able to firmly plant themselves within their victims’ lives by chipping away at them mentally, day by day, controlling how their victim sees themselves. Emotional abusers erode their victims’ self-esteem, confidence, independence, and relationships with others until the abused partner begins to feel as though they have nothing in their lives except their abuser. Once getting to this point, abusers will often further exert control over the victim by threatening to withhold themselves. The abuser may even try threatening divorce as an emotional abuse tactic themselves. The victim may find themselves begging for their abuser to stay because they fear being left empty and abandoned.

Divorcing an Emotional Abuser

guy sadness

Domestic abuse is unlikely to improve over time. In most cases, it only gets worse. Victims married to hurtful partners are encouraged to divorce over the emotional abuse. At Ramos Law, there are knowledgeable family attorneys experienced in emotional abuse affects divorce law, and are to help. End the cycle of abuse while you can. Call Ramos Law Group today.

The following information is provided to give litigants and potential litigants an idea of what to expect in a divorce. However, it is important to remember that each and every divorce is different and not all stages apply to each divorce case. There is an infinite number of issues that could arise, and this article is intended only to give an overall idea and not to contemplate every possibility.

Stage One: Initiating the Divorce and Provisional Remedies

The initial stage of divorce includes a filing of a petition for divorce, along with additional provisional requests, if any. The initial requests from the Petitioner must be served on the Respondent or the Respondent has to execute a waiver of service indicating receipt of the pleadings.

Along with the Original Petition for Divorce, a Petitioner can file a Temporary Restraining Order and Request for a Temporary Orders Hearing.

Temporary Orders protect the parties until a final decree of divorce is issued to make sure all the bills are getting paid, each parent has access to the children, that the children are being provided for, that each party exclusive of their vehicle and/or residence, and access to funds to live and pay their attorney, if necessary.

Stage Two: Information Gathering

Once the initial issues have been resolved, the next stage of divorce involves the process and procedures necessary to gather the information needed to finalize the divorce. Parties can agree to the exchange of information or the parties can utilize formal discovery procedures to gain access to the information necessary to either reach an agreement and/or prepare for trial.

Parties will need to gather all information necessary to properly determine the assets and debts which are includable in the community estate and those that are the separate property of each party. Additionally, any information necessary to resolve issues related to the children would be gathered during this time as well, including, but not limited to, information that could affect custody, possession and access, child support and medical support for the children.

Again, this stage of litigation can be done completely by agreement if the parties are able to work together and are willing to rely on the information provided by the other party. However, it can be the stage of the divorce that can quickly cost the parties quite a bit of time and money.

Third Stage: Finishing & The Final Decree of Divorce

Once the parties have all the information they need, the final stage of the Divorce process is achieved either through the parties reaching a settlement on their issues or trying the case before a judge or jury. Once the decision or an agreement is reached, the parties will have to convert the agreement or decision into a Final Decree of Divorce. In addition to the decree, the parties may need a number of additional documents to be drafted and executed to effectuate provisions of the decree, such as transferring the title of a vehicle or transferring money from retirement. Finally, the court will also require that additional documents be submitted with the final order, such as a medical support order for children.

There are an infinite number of issues that could arise, and this article is intended only to give an overall idea and not to contemplate every possibility. To learn more, contact Ramos Law Group to consult with an attorney about your case.

About Divorce

Tackling a divorce is one of the greatest challenges any person will ever face. Separating spouses often have to deal with a host of emotional, financial, and logistical issues both during and after divorce proceedings.

From coping with the loss of a marital relationship to determining visitation schedules and managing new budgets, divorce takes exes-to-be on a mental rollercoaster ride, often accompanied by physical manifestations of stress. Making the process even more difficult, many separating couples face an additional trial: talking to their kids about the divorce.

Questions in an Uncomfortable Conversation

Breaking the news of a divorce to children is often the most grueling experience for parents in the midst of a split. Figuring out how to approach the situation can be overwhelming. When is the right time to tell the kids? What is the best way to explain the cause of the separation? How can the children be spared from thinking the divorce is their fault? How can they be comforted and assured that they are loved, even if their parents are no longer in love?

When it comes to sharing the news of a divorce with children, it can seem like there are more questions than answers. However, there are some tried and true methods recommended by pediatric professionals for approaching this tricky situation. Following these steps can help ensure the most positive outcomes for both parents and children.

Have Age-Appropriate Conversations

When telling your kid about divorce, there are a number of factors to consider. One of the most important factors is the age of the child. Your child’s perception of the world, their ability to manage emotions, their aptitude to understand complex ideas and situations are all very dependent on their age and development. How you approach talking to kids about divorce should vary greatly depending on whether that child is 4 or 14 years old.

Advice for Toddlers

Young babies and toddlers are unlikely to be able to truly comprehend anything about the divorce process. But, as children reach preschool age, their cognition will develop to the point where simple concepts can be understood. Although limited, children between 3 to 5 years old have some ability to understand cause and effect, as well as express their feelings.

Children at this age are still highly reliant on their parents and tend to have a very self-centered worldview. As such, when talking to kids about divorce, parents of children in this age group need to remember that young children often think that the world revolves around them. Divorcing moms and dads must make assurances to preschoolers that the divorce is not the child’s fault. It is also important for parents to offer young kids as much stability and normalcy as possible. A focus on regular meal times, play times, and bedtime routines are key to achieving the best transition.

Advice for Preteen Children

For children between the ages of 6 to 12, it remains critical for parents to offer a sense of stability. Kids within this age group are beginning to develop greater independence and are capable of more complex thoughts, but intricate matters such as divorce can still be hard for them to fully understand and address.

Parents also need to be aware that even though their children might have the ability to comprehend certain concepts related to divorce, they may still be reluctant to talk about their feelings. Children within this age range may also assign blame or be upset with a particular parent whom they believe to be at fault for the breakup of the family.

When telling your kid about divorce, try to distance your child from your decision to separate. Emphasize that the choice to divorce was made by adults and that the child is not responsible for choosing sides or trying to remedy the situation.

Advice for Teens

Many parents find explaining divorce to their teenage children to be the most difficult, often due to their more developed sense of independence. They may feel the need to choose a side or attempt to distance themselves from both parents. Make it clear that you and their other parent are still willing and eager to cheer them on during sports, attend graduation, prepare them for dances/prom, and other activities important to them, even if it means seeing your former spouse.

Although teenagers do not have legal rights to decide which parent to live with following a divorce, it is important to make their wishes and opinions feel valued and appreciated.

Prepare for a conversation about your divorce with your teenager by getting a sense for what their “new normal” will look like. Explain that your divorce might mean seeing their other parent on alternating weekends & holidays, how their school schedule could be affected, and how their college tuition will be paid for.

Divorce is an uncertain time, but the more specific you can be, the easier it will be for your teenager to accept. A lingering sense of the unknown is often the most difficult to deal with.

Minimize the Child’s Exposure to Conflict

Divorce can be as hard on kids as it is on the parents. As caregivers for the collateral damage of a marital split, it is incumbent upon parents to protect children from any unnecessary trauma associated with divorce. If there is any acrimony between parents, children must be shielded from it. When talking to kids about divorce, emphasize your intention to make the divorce transition as smooth and stress-free as possible.

One easy tactic to help keep the environment calm for kids during a stormy divorce is by making sure to limit communication with your ex when exchanging the children or attending joint functions. Furthermore, children should not be used to transmit messages between feuding spouses. Although it might sometimes be inevitable, parents should make it a priority to avoid using their children as messengers, particularly if those communications are harmful or aggravating.

Respectful co-parenting will go a long way towards giving your child much needed peace of mind during a turbulent divorce. Even though it might not be your initial inclination, taking opportunities to show respectful behavior towards your ex will allow you to show your child your best self, and might also help establish the foundation for a drama-free existence with your co-parent. Seemingly insignificant steps, such as dropping off and picking up your child on time shows respect for your former spouse’s time and can help forge a better parenting relationship in the future.

Utilize Therapeutic Resources

Utilize Therapeutic

Fortunately, there are myriad therapeutic tools available to assist you in telling your kid about divorce. Books and other media that address divorce and alternative family structures can be very helpful for young to pre-teenage children. These options are useful for demonstrating to children that they are not alone in what they are experiencing, as well as showing ways that other children and families have learned to cope with their new circumstances.

For children that have difficulty adjusting to a parental split, professional therapy could be a good option. Approximately 25% of children whose parents go through a divorce struggle with emotional and behavioral challenges. As such, all children should be given the opportunity to speak with a therapist or counselor when dealing with divorce.

Therapy may be a particularly appealing option for older children and teenagers. The ability to vent and receive input from a neutral third-party can be cathartic for young adults who may not feel comfortable expressing their feelings to their parents. Professional counseling may also be a helpful resource for parents who are having difficulty talking to kids about divorce on their own.

You Are Not Alone

If you are going through a divorce and are looking for help in talking to kids about divorce, the legal team at Ramos Law have the resources and experience to help. Contact Ramos Law Group today for compassionate and experienced legal counsel to guide you through the entire divorce process. Start with your initial consultation and get on the path to recovery for you and your family.

Houston, TX, August 6, 2018 –Ramos Law Group, PLLC (RLG) is Jessica Mikellpleased to announce the addition of a new rock star attorney as part of a significant undertaking to rebuild the RLG team with the most qualified and experienced team members.  The new attorney, Jessica Mikell, will be based out of the Houston office but will travel to The Woodlands or Sugar Land offices as demand requires.  She joins the principal attorney, Mary E. Ramos, who is Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and Lindsey Lewis who has been with the firm serving as an associate attorney for three years.

Rounding out the 2018 push to rebuild the team is Christina Garza, Board Certified Paralegal in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization who joins from the Kutty Law Firm and Megan Davis who returns from the Law Office of Joel Nass.  Jessica, Christina, and Megan were all previous Ramos Law Group employees and are all happy to be back home.

Jessica Mikell joins the Ramos Law Group from Cordell & Cordell known throughout the nation as the divorce lawyer for men firm.  Starting her career at RLG many years back, she has gone on to represent hundreds of clients from single dads to executives for fortune 500 companies.   Mrs. Mikell is well-known throughout the family law community as a no-nonsense and highly prepared divorce lawyer for men.  She has handled cases with highly contested child custody, property, and parental alienation issues.    “When clients feel like their world is falling apart, it is essential for them to have a strong advocate familiar with the journey to remind them that our job is to help them navigate the temporary muddy waters to achieve the results that will help them move on to the next chapter in their lives,” she said.

At Ramos Law Group, we offer a ‘Raving Fan Guarantee.’ If our customer is not happy with the service they receive, we offer them up to a $1,000 refund.Alfredo Ramos, Business Futurist

Mrs. Mikell will focus her efforts on the divorce lawyer for men niche clientele and help dads maintain their parental rights throughout Houston and surrounding areas.

Ramos Law Group, PLLC  was started in 2004 by Mary E. Ramos who through her efforts and those of her team has grown the organization from a single attorney firm to one with over ten employees and three attorneys.  We are committed to the practice of divorce and family law in Harris, Fort Bend, Galveston, Montgomery and Brazoria Counties. We have effectively negotiated positive outcomes in high net-worth divorce, child custody, and property division cases while keeping attorney fees under control.

If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Christina Garza at (713) 225-6200 or email at info@ramosfamilylaw.com.

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