When couples decide to divorce, they have to agree on many things. But the situation can be more bitter when it comes to false allegations of abuse in custody cases. Some parents use their kids in the divorce, even making up false stories about abuse to hurt the other parent. But there are laws to stop this from happening. 

In Orange County, the court always looks out for what’s best for the kids in any divorce. But when allegations of abuse enter the discussion, Orange County laws stop divorcing parents from making such false allegations only to win a divorce. If the court finds out a parent lied about abuse, they’ll be in big trouble. In this article, we will learn what are the penalties and false allegations of child abuse in child custody cases. 

Let’s have a look for a better understanding!

California Law

3027.1. False accusations of child abuse or neglect during child custody proceedings; knowledge; penalties

(a) If a court determines, based on the investigation described in Section 3027 or other evidence presented to it, that an accusation of child abuse or neglect made during a child custody proceeding is false and the person making the accusation knew it to be false at the time the accusation was made, the court may impose reasonable money sanctions, not to exceed all costs incurred by the party accused as a direct result of defending the accusation, and reasonable attorney’s fees incurred in recovering the sanctions, against the person making the accusation. For the purposes of this section, “person” includes a witness, a party, or a party’s attorney.

(b) On motion by any person requesting sanctions under this section, the court shall issue its order to show cause why the requested sanctions should not be imposed. The order to show cause shall be served on the person against whom the sanctions are sought and a hearing thereon shall be scheduled by the court to be conducted at least 15 days after the order is served.

(c) The remedy provided by this section is in addition to any other remedy provided by law.

What Are Common Reasons for False Allegations of Child Abuse In California

In California, the court takes false allegations of child abuse very seriously. 

In California, making up stories about child abuse is a big deal. It’s seen as a type of child abuse itself, and there are serious punishments for accusers. False allegations can be made for many reasons including:

  • Trying to win a custody fight
  • Getting back to the partner 
  • Hiding their bad behavior
  • Wanting attention or sympathy from others

What Are the Possible Penalties for False Allegations of Child Abuse in Child Custody

Limited & Supervised Visitation 

If the court finds out that a parent made false allegations about their partner to try to get custody of the kids, it shows that they’re not thinking about what’s best for the kids.

They’re just trying to use the situation for their benefit or to hurt the other parent. When this happens, the court might decide that the parent who made false allegations may have limited and supervised visitation with their children. 

Sanctions for False Child Abuse Allegations in Court

If someone makes false allegations of child abuse against the other party during proceedings. In this case, the court can impose financial sanctions on the accused party. This is to stop people from using lies to win and to help the other parent pay for defending themselves.

The punishment can include:

  • Paying for the other parent’s lawyer
  • Paying for all the costs of proving the allegations wrong

Besides, the court might limit the custody rights of accused parents. Remember one thing important, anyone else including lawyers and witnesses who made false child abuse or neglect can get in trouble.

Civil Penalty

If someone makes false allegations of child abuse, he or she can be held in a civil action for defamation. When someone wrongly accuses another person of a crime, it’s automatically seen as damaging to their reputation.

For example, if a parent spreads false rumors on social media about the other parent hurting their child, they could be legally responsible for damaging the other parent’s reputation if these lies cause harm.

In California, there are also laws against making false reports of child abuse, which means there can be criminal consequences for lying about it.

Under California Penal Code § 11172(a), a person can incur civil or criminal liability “if it can be proven that a false report was made and the person knew that the report was false or was made with reckless disregard of the truth or falsity of the report…”

Loss of Custody

False allegations about child abuse can lead to losing custody of the child.  

Making up stories about child abuse can lead to losing custody of the child. If the court finds out that the lies were meant to hurt someone, the person who made them might not be allowed to have child custody anymore, and they could even lose their rights as a parent.

Criminal Record

If the person who made up the false allegations about child abuse is found guilty, they will have a criminal record. They can’t find employment or a house, and it can also affect their chances of being able to have custody of their children in the future.

Get Legal Help from Child Custody Lawyers In Orange County

Child welfare and safety matter a lot in all cases of child abuse. The false allegations can hurt everyone involved: the person accused, the one making the accusations, and especially the child. So, it is important to take the right legal steps. If you or someone you know is dealing with false allegations of child abuse, you must contact Hills Law Group. They can help you understand what to do and support you through this tough time. They are experienced and know how to handle false allegations of child abuse in custody cases.