Consequences of False Accusations in Custody Cases
Learning what is considered a false allegation is one of the most important things you can do to keep yourself clear of them or inadvertently make any such allegations of your own. The consequences of a false allegation can be quite severe for you and for your attorney.
But before getting to the consequences, it’s essential to understand what a false allegation is. Some accusations are made knowingly, while others aren’t.
So, What Is Considered a False Allegation?
A false accusation in a custody case can take on many forms. It can be an accusation of child abuse or domestic violence that is not true. It can be a lie told to gain an advantage in the custody process. It can also be forgetting important details or events and later misremembering them.
In general, a false allegation is any claim or statement that is not true. It occurs through both commission and omission. So be upfront and honest from the get-go. Otherwise, you could face the consequences like the following.
Being Responsible for Both Sets of Attorney Fees
Attorney’s fees are always a point of contention in a custody case. But lying or making false accusations can give your spouse all the ammunition they need to press for payment and add several thousand to your overall costs.
For example, suppose you make a false accusation of domestic violence. In that case, your spouse could file a motion asking the court to make you pay their attorney’s fees if the evidence is insufficient to issue a warrant. Think twice about escalating things without proof, or you could pay a lot more than you’d anticipated.
Additional fines can also come out of custody cases when false accusations happen. For instance, getting caught in a lie during the trial might put you at risk of perjury charges. Possible outcomes of perjury are monetary damages (in addition to jail time).
It can also tarnish your reputation. That’s especially true if it gets out to an employer or the public in general. Damaged reputations can indirectly affect your earning potential.
A false allegation may also hinder your custody arrangement. For starters, it can reduce visitation with the other spouse receiving most of the custody rights. This can be too much to bear if you’re an otherwise loving parent.
Additionally, a false accusation may result in the time you do have falling under supervision. It’s tough to forge a stronger bond with your child when all your interactions have to be under the watchful eye of someone else. It also creates tension between you and the other parent that your child will feel.
Custody Battle or Reversal
A custody battle is costly in terms of finances and emotional damage. That goes for you and your child. Parents have rights against false allegations, and they typically choose to pursue them when targeted.
Even if the case is already final, a false allegation can put your existing arrangement at risk. That’s because it motivates the other parent to file for a custody modification.
False Accusations Can Ruin Your Case
Answering what is considered a false allegation is vital at the start of the process. It will help you avoid making one, but it also can give you an idea of what to watch out for.
If you feel a false accusation about you is out there, you need an attorney on your side capable of fighting hard for your rights. That’s where the experience of Dalena & Bosch can help. Contact us today to see what we can do for your case.