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Tina, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33166
Experience:  JD, 17 years legal experience including family law
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My husband is verbally abusive to both myself and my 2 year

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My husband is verbally abusive to both myself and my 2 year old. I would like to leave the marriage but am afraid I won't be able to protect my daughter if we share custody. How or Can I use this verbal abusive to have custody?

Hello and welcome.

I am very sorry to hear of your difficult situation. Please note: (1) this is general information only, not legal advice; and (2) my function is to give you honest information and not necessarily to tell you what you wish to hear. There may be a delay between your follow ups and my replies as I review your responses and prepare your answer.

Do you have any record of the verbal abuse such as police reports, recordings, documentation by therapists, or witness testimony?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No official record. Witnesses to verbal abuse to me but not to my daughter. If I record him without his knowledge could this be used?

Hello again, Maggie.

Yes, in Missouri it is typically legal for one party to a conversation to record the conversation. So if your spouse is being verbally abusive, you can legally record your conversation with him and it can be used as evidence in a court of law normally.

That would be my first suggestion to document the abuse. In addition, if the abuse ever escalates to physical abuse, make sure you document any injuries to you or your daughter, including taking pictures of any bruises or other marks and file a police report regarding such incidents.

The testimony of any therapists or school officials is also helpful if they are informed of the abuse as part of their treatment or education of your daughter.

You could also maintain a journal of the abuse, which can be used in a custody hearing as well, especially where it involves abuse toward your daughter by your spouse. If you have documented the incidents well, that would typically put you in the best position to avoid having to permit your spouse visitation with your daughter, or at least unsupervised visitation.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Thank you!


Note: Please feel free to request me if you have future legal questions by going to your “My Questions” page and clicking on “Request Tina again” next to my photo. I look forward to hearing from you again.

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