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Can I Use Texts to Prove Spousal Abuse in Our Michigan Divorce?

 Posted on November 03, 2022 in Divorce

Novi divorce lawyerWhen a relationship has gone on for months or years, an abusive partner rarely thinks carefully about whether other people will be able to see evidence of their abuse and often leaves a trail of proof in written communication and even in voicemails.

However, whether such evidence can be brought to court in a divorce case is another question entirely. Criminal and civil cases sometimes handle evidence differently, and divorces are civil procedures. Even Personal Protection Orders (PPOs) are civil procedures, although the behavior they guard against may potentially be criminal in nature (such as physical abuse). If you want to divorce an abusive spouse - especially if you are hoping to keep your spouse away from your children - you will need to show evidence of the abuse. Read on to learn about how this can be done, and then contact a Michigan divorce attorney for a confidential consultation. 

How Can I Prove Abuse in My Michigan Divorce? 

It may seem unfair that, after years of enduring abuse at the hands of their partner, a spouse has to prove abuse to get relief from a court. But false accusations are common in divorce, and it is essential to back up any abuse claims with evidence, whether the alleged abuse is physical or emotional. 

Physical abuse can be easier to prove, especially if it is severe enough to appear in photographs or doctor’s notes. Emotional abuse can be trickier, which is where text messages and other written evidence may come into play. When deciding whether text messages or other electronic communication can be admitted as evidence in court, several things need to be taken into consideration: 

  • Was the evidence directly given to the spouse, or was it obtained second-hand (such as a text message to a friend about a serious fight)?
  • Is the evidence directly relevant to the case? 
  • Can the evidence be proven to be authentic? 

These may seem like clear-cut guidelines, but every case is just a little different. Another way to prove emotional abuse, especially to children, can be by providing expert testimony from a psychologist or therapist who has spoken with an emotionally abused child and can testify about the impacts of the parent’s abuse. 

Whatever you do, do not begin surreptitiously recording your spouse without their consent. Not only could this put you in serious danger if caught, but the evidence may be inadmissible. Instead, speak with an attorney who has experience in court evidence rules and find out whether your texts may be admitted as proof of spousal abuse. 

Contact a Novi, MI Divorce Lawyer for a Free Consultation

If you need to prove your spouse is a danger to you or your children, meet with an Oakland County, MI divorce attorney right away. The way you gather evidence can determine whether that evidence is admissible in court, and we can advise you on the best way to show a judge that you need immediate relief. Call 248-344-9700 today to schedule a free consultation with Elkouri Heath, PLC. 




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