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Can I use a previous domestic violence charge against my ex in family court from 6 years ago?

Plattsburgh, NY |

I am not trying to charge him for the domestic violence, but I am trying to prove to the judge that he is manipulative and controlling and also has a temper, therefore I have been intimidated by him since we broke up. He has lied in the past to the judge and I am afraid he will try and make the judge believe that he tries and communicates with me respectfully. Which he doesn't speak to me at all concerning our child ( joint legal custody). I would like to bring up his past from getting arrested with threatening my life when we first broke up? Do you think the judge would take this information as a note of his personality?

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Attorney answers 4


Certainly it is a factor for a judge to consider.

Joseph A. Lo Piccolo, Esq.
Immediate Past President, Criminal Courts Bar Association 11'-12'
Hession Bekoff & Lo Piccolo
1103 Stewart Ave, Suite 200
Garden City, NY 11530
516-408-3666 (o) / 516-408-3833 (f)

I am a criminal defense attorney practicing in Nassau, Suffolk and New York City. The above information is not a substitution for a meeting whereas all potential legal issues can be discussed.


You can try to get leverage out of this fact but the court may believe that it is too far in the past to be relevant.

I have been a criminal attorney in New York for almost 25 years. website: Phone #: 718-208-6094 email: This answer is only for informational purposes and is not meant as legal advice.


Honestly, a six year old claim or charge of domestic violence is not very valuable. In my experience, the Court will be more interested in who the parties are now rather than who they used to be. On the other hand, if he had been ordered to engage in some sort of domestic violence program, parenting program or therapy, but did not, that fact could be significant even six years later.


You can bring it up, but the judge will not likely give as much weight as if it was contemporaneous with your current case. Additionally, you have a current custody order, and this occurred prior to that order, the judge cannot consider it in determining whether there has been a change of circumstances so that you can modify the order. You would be better off showing the judge that he doesnt communicate respectfully when you speak about your child (harasses you threatens you etc) via text messages or emails. Good luck.