Unfortunately, false allegations of child abuse pop up in many divorces. In some cases, the parent making the allegation may believe the abuse to have occurred, but in many situations, the parent knows quite well that the accusation is false. Perhaps the parent is doing it to be malicious, or the parent genuinely believes the children would be better off having limited contact with the other parent. Maybe mental illness is involved.
Whatever the case, it can be nerve-wracking for you, as a parent knowing your ex’s personality and history, to be waiting and wondering if there will be a false allegation made against you. Here is what you may expect if your spouse makes such an accusation.
Work with a lawyer
Having an attorney by your side can help minimize any damage these accusations might do to you and your family. Without this assistance, you may face more of an uphill battle. For example, an attorney should be well-versed in uncovering inconsistencies and obviously false statements in your ex’s account.
Advocate for the children’s best interests
Authorities are likely to open an investigation, and while you may feel angry and frustrated, it is in the children’s best interests that you cooperate fully and readily instead of stonewalling and arguing. The sooner the investigation begins, the sooner it can be resolved. It is hard to say whether your children will be taken out of your home or visitation limited during this time. It depends on the situation, allegations and in some cases, the children’s ages. (In many cases, parents make false allegations when the children are too young to speak for themselves, but not always.)
What the outcome might look like
In quite a few situations, the investigation proves that the false allegation is just that, false. The accuser probably faces a loss of custody or limited time with the children, at least for a period. If there is evidence that the accusation is genuine and you do not yet have a lawyer, you should consult with one now.
Also, if the allegations have dragged on for months or years and invaded your children’s lives, counseling may be in order.