Can I get a divorce if I’m pregnant and have been abused by my husband and have proof of the abuse?

Asked on August 2, 2015 under Family Law, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can get divorced even if you were not abused; the law no longer forces people to stay in marriages when they don't want to. The abuse will factor into custody of your unborn child and your husband's support obligations after divorce, but is not a necessary factor to get divorced in the first place. If you are writing about physical (not emotion or verbal) abuse, then your husband has also committed a crime--assault--and you could file a police report and press charges for it. If you are in any risk--including a risk of losing the baby from abuse--you should *immediately* speak with a family law or divorce attorney about your rights and options, which may include a protective order. If you cannot afford an attorney, try contacting Legal Services; you can also try contacting your state bar association, and see if they can refer you to an attorney who will take this case pro bono (for free); and/or try contacting local law schools, many of whom maintain clinics where law students, under a professor's guidance, provide legal help. You may also wish to consider moving out, such as moving in with family or a friend, if that is an option.

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