(3) The court shall not consider conduct of a proposed custodian that does not affect
relationship to the child. If domestic violence and abuse is alleged, the court shall
determine the extent to which the domestic violence and abuse has affected the child
and the child's relationship to both parents.
This is rapidly becoming the primary determining factor, and is often the only issue
considered by the court, in determining custody of the child.
What this boils down to in most cases is the first one with the EPO wins.
By the time a low income individual with little or no court experience hires a lawyer
and fights their EPO the damage has been done.
Kentucky taxpayers are footing the bill to have state agencies harass individuals
targeted by EPOs based on nothing more than a false allegation.
There are no legal repercussions for filing false EPOs, and no limit as to how many
times an individual may file them.
Facts About Family Violence, Fixing Only Half the Problem
One of, if not the most despicable weapon used by one parent against the other. The
EPO is quite often the deciding factor used by the court in determining custody and
visitation arrangements. Once an EPO is filed the court seldom listens to the evidence,
or looks for the truth. The Defendant gets a streamlined two minute hearing where
they are almost always sentenced to a Domestic Violence Order with little or no proof
All that is necessary to file an EPO is the statement "I'm afraid of _________ (the
soon to be defendant)". There are currently no legal repercussions for filing EPOs
falsely, and no limit as to the number of times a person can file them. EPOs are
becoming a convenient means for ending relationships for some. They gain the person
filing them the support of the community and the court, and later, (in marriage and
custody hearings) are an ace in the hole. And all at the expense of every tax paying
A typical scenario is as follows;
a. One Partner decides they want a divorce.
b. One Partner provokes the other partner to anger.
c. One Partner files a Emergency Protection Order using the phrase “ I am afraid
d. The Defendant gets a two minute hearing where they are immediately assumed
guilty, and sentenced to a Domestic Violence Order with little or no proof of their
e. If children are involved, the petitioner is immediately awarded temporary
custody and the defendant is sentenced to standard visitation only. This begins the
long term alienation process.
f. Any efforts the defendant takes to defend themselves, is then used against
them as a substantiation of their guilt, rather than their appeal to clear themselves.
g. Through course of this process, the petitioner continues the alienation of
the children from the defendant, using the courts and the law to support their position.
h. The cost then to right the wrong begins to mount, the defendant has no choice
but to give up, the petitioner wins, the children lose, and the defendant gets fined
and sentenced to pay child support while suffering continued alienation from their
i. At this point, the defendant starts living out, depending on the age of the
children, up to a seventeen or eighteen year sentence that was handed down by the
courts and society without ever being proven guilty.
j. At this point according to national statistics, the odds of the above scenario
playing out again years later by the children are greatly increased. We have then
added to the problem and the cycle continues.
Further, domestic violence between parents often has no bearing on the individual
abilities of each to successfully parent the child(ren). In fact, sometimes one parent
might have acted out of frustration, and committed domestic violence upon the other
parent because the other parent was habitually abusive or neglectful of the child(ren).
This is never a consideration of the courts or any state agencies. They are trained
to accuse, blame, and sentence. The National Clearing House for Child Abuse Neglect
Information (NCCANI) statistics find that in all child abuse and neglect reported,
the mother is the guilty party 60% of the time - more than babysitters, fathers,
other relatives, teachers, coaches, and all other adults combined. Likewise, in all
child murders, a sole custody mother was the guilty party 61% of the time - more
than gang members, kidnappers, step-parents, fathers, strangers, other relatives,
babysitters, sisters, brothers, and all other types of people combined. So, in order
to be preventive of the true nature of American child abuse and neglect, fathers
should be awarded sole custody of the children approximately 76% of the time. Shared
parenting can significantly reduce the stress associated with sole custody, and reduce
the isolation of children in abusive situations by allowing both parents to alternately
monitor the children's health and welfare, and to thereby protect them from serious
A recent Dr. Phil show on Tuesdays were he is helping couples who’s marriage
is in trouble is a good example. One wife had issued 5 EPOs against her ex’s and
boyfriends. Some women are now using EPOs as the simple way out of a relationship.
It gains them sympathy from the community, friends, and court, and is an easy way
out. Dr Phil called her a bitc…, Kentucky court would treat her as a poor battered
victim of a violent male dominated society.
In another case an EPO was used to evict a man from his own home. The home he
built himself before ever meeting or marrying the woman that had a affair on him
while he worked night shift. He didn’t even know anything was going on. The sheriff
knocked on the door while he was eating supper with his wife one night when he was
off. He was not even allowed to step back inside his own home. He had to spend the
next few nights with friends until he was allowed to remove his personal things several
days later. He never spent another night in his own home.
Another is the case of a newly wed couple. One month after being married the
wife spent the night with another man, and then swore out an EPO against her new
husband. The court did not hold the woman accountable for any type of moral misconduct,
even extra marital sex, but the man did not have a right to even become angry.
In yet another case a man was found in contempt of his EPO and sentenced to 10 days
in jail for sending his wife roses.
There are currently no legal repercussions for filing EPOs without cause or reason.
There is no limit as to how many one person can file. They have become a very effective
tool in divorce and custody disputes. And in many cases the first one with the EPO
is the winner. And it can and is used just as unfairly against women also, just not
All taxpaying Kentuckians pay for this.
In some cases the EPOs are the cause of the anger and violence, not the prevention!
Join us. Let’s fix this.
Send us your story regarding EPOs. Please include as many facts as possible; dates,