Divorce can be very emotional and may cause even the most rational people to act in inappropriate ways.
People often panic over the thought of losing their family or their financial stability. If a situation was already volatile, divorce also can be the final straw for many people. It is not unusual for people to make threats, to steal money, to destroy property, or to hide children from the other parent.
When facing such emergencies, attempt to remain calm and take appropriate action to protect yourself, your children, and your assets. If children are involved, it is important to their future development that they are not in the middle of a violent situation and that they feel some level of security with at least one of their parents. When facing an emergency, do your best to focus on what to do in the immediate moment to not make the situation worse. New Mexico law provides many remedies that can help in this type of a situation.
In addition to meeting with an attorney at your first opportunity, develop a safety plan in the event you and your children need to escape your home.
Give your attorney all of the details regarding your fears and any acts of violence or abuse. An attorney cannot advise you without knowing the full story. If you take no action because you fear the consequences, nothing will change for you. It is not easy to take that first step to break the cycle of violence, but it is the only avenue for a new life for you and for your children.
Consult with an agency that helps victims of domestic violence. Call the National Domestic Violence Hot-line at (800)SAFE (7233), the Women Against Violence Hot-line at (800)799-7233, or the New Mexico Coalition Against Domestic Violence at (505) 246-9240 to get more information about the domestic violence program closest to you. And, of course, in case of emergency, call 911.
For more information our book Divorce in New Mexico is available on the home page of our website for $14.95.
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