Family violence is a serious and potentially life-threatening circumstance that often requires immediate legal action be taken to protect individuals, children and their extended family members. Ms. McCarthy is committed to helping a party navigate this physically and emotionally exhausting area of the law. Importantly, Georgia law protects a party who has been the victim of domestic violence. Judges are authorized to grant ex parte protective orders to prevent an adverse party from contacting the victim or otherwise making contact. However, often these orders are only effective for 30 days. Thus, the victim is required to make an evidentiary showing, in court, to justify extending the protective order. Ms. McCarthy often represents victims in these hearings to ensure their rights are protected and that any legal protections which are necessary are decreed to protect children and other family members.
Nevertheless, there are sometimes abuses of these legal protections. It is not uncommon for parties to utilize the court’s ex parte order process to alienate a party from their children and/or their assets in connection with a divorce proceeding. Thus, Ms. McCarthy also represents parties who have been unjustifiably accused of domestic violence to ensure that the court does not take any unwarranted action which might adversely affect an innocent party.
Either way, it is important to consult with legal counsel before presenting your case in court. Ms. McCarthy will diligently work to protect a party’s legal rights. This may involve requesting an extension of the protective order or it may involve negotiating alternatives that work for the parties in the short and long term.