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My 10 year old daughter just told me she no longer feels…

Hello! My 10 year...

Hello! My 10 year old daughter just told me she no longer feels safe around her father. She said last night on the couch, he kept kissing her on the lips & kept staring at her. She moved to the other side of the couch because she was uncomfortable. He asked her to come and lay on his lap. She declined and apparently, that’s when I came in and sat with her. Does this constitute abuse? Not sure what to do. My husband and I have been talking about divo

Lawyer's Assistant: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.

Divorce

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

No

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Answered in 5 minutes by:
3/11/2018
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 13,332
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today. Because I want to provide you with the most accurate answer possible, do you mind if I take a moment to review your question?

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Also, I am in Minnesota

I'm sorry to hear about your situation. The answer to your question is yes; this would probably constitute abuse, but it's a little tricky. It's not against the law for a parent to kiss a child on the lips. Many cultures and families do such a thing; however, if you have reason to believe that this is just a precursor to sexual abuse, then this is something that you should consider not only during the divorce, but also something you should bring up to the police and/or child and family services.

Because you only have the word of your child, it's not a ton of evidence for a district attorney to go on; however, I always recommend to parents that if they suspect something is up, then they are probably right. You should consider contacting child and family services so they can conduct an investigation into the matter to find out what's going on. They may interview your daughter and her dad to determine what happened. Even if no arrests are made, if it happens again or if your daughter has another complaint, they can reference that issue. If the district attorney decides to bring charges, they can reference those investigations conducted by child and family services.

As far as your divorce is concerned, this could be something that you could use to help get custody because it's not in the best interests of the child to be with an abuser.

I'm very sorry about your situation. Did you have any other questions for me about this?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
No, my husband and child are nearby

Oh, that’s not a problem with the phone call. The system automatically asks if you want one, but there is no problem declining the request. Did you get to see my answer?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I saw it. Thank you for your help

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Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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