Concord, NC asked in Domestic Violence and Family Law for California

Q: What steps to take as an (adult) daughter living with parents and the father is extremely abusive?

Important to note the parents speak little english and are chinese. Family is comprised of parents+two daughters, one 23 one underage.

Theyre technically legally divorced but live together.

The mother is hesitant to take action out of fear for her life.

The father is physically and sexually abusive, financially manipulative, and stalks/harresses by following the mom around and attempting to make her lose her job and preventing her from sleeping.

Daughter called cops on the dad after sexual assault on the mom, and a temp. restraining order was filed but the mother invited him back to the house out of fear. Disowned daughter for getting him arrested.

He has physically abused the mom, shows aggressive and violent behavior, and emotional manipulation. He is attempting to distort money from them/threatened to them kill in the past.

Not sure what steps to take with an attorney especially with no money, but this situation is extremely serious.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Susan G. Cohen
Susan G. Cohen
  • Domestic Violence Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: From the way you have worded your question, it sounds as if you are a friend or family member. You are describing a very dangerous situation. If a minor child is at risk, you may want to encourage the mother or adult child to reach out to either the police or Children's Protectve Service. This may be a situation where CPS may determine they need to step in to protect the younger child from harm. It would be a kindness to discuss resources with the adult child including how she might get help through Domestic Violence Programs at the local Superior Court. Domestic Violence programs usually encourage women in these situations to set some money aside in a Bank Account held in their own name alone until they have enough money to rent their own place. In extreme situations, there may be a local Domestic Violence Shelter. A thoughtful conversation with the older daughter may encourage her to protect both herself and her sister by seeking help from Domestic Violence Programs and/or the police to get out of their very dangerous situation. But each of the adult woman must decide for herself what she needs to do. You may want to think about whether you wish to make a police report or contact CPS. But if you actvely intervene, you risk losing the friendship and trust of these women.

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