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The Law Offices of James A. Adams, P.C., L.L.O.
Phone: 800-561-9043

The task of proving unseen abuse in a custody dispute

If you ask ten different people what kind of evidence would be permissible in court, you would likely get several different answers. It seems that everyone has their own opinion about what is "legal" when it comes to proving abuse allegations, whether they be verbal or physical.

The first thing you should know is that in order to prove certain allegations in a court of law you will need far more than circumstantial evidence alone. In other words, a "he said, she said" narrative will not win the case. Any party who is attempting to gain full custody of a child by way of abuse allegations must be able to prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the claims are true. The Nebraska legislature has put in place strict rules of evidence that must be followed. For instance, if a telephone conversation is recorded, the rule of completeness will be applied. It states that the conversation must not be taken out of context, it should be a clear recording in which words cannot be mistaken, and there should be proof that the person on the other end of the line is who you claim they are. Basically, there cannot be any possibility whatsoever that the conversation could have been staged or coerced.

If you are alleging that the other party is physically or sexually abusing a child, there are numerous witnesses who may testify. People who know the party, such as relatives, friends, or medical providers can attest to any history of abuse or domestic violence. In addition, the child may be examined by qualified medical and psychiatric professionals who can offer an opinion. Investigating and obtaining proof of physical or sexual abuse is an easier task than proving claims of just verbal and mental abuse.

In either situation, a child custody attorney will be your best friend. Taking such serious claims before a Judge should be handled with expertise and knowledge of the rules of evidence.

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