Fayetteville, NC asked in Domestic Violence and Family Law for North Carolina

Q: Marine wife needs to move out of state to get away from abusive husband, can she be charged with kidnapping?

He’s in the Marines transitioning out, she fears for her safety and has no monetary resources, he made her quit her job. The only option she has is to move back home to her moms to get back on her feet. She’s afraid if she files for separation and then leaves he could do something terrible. She wants to leave while he’s at work and file for separation and subsequently divorce once safely in West Virginia. Can she be charged with kidnapping if she leaves the state without his permission? And if so is she restricted to a distance? Or a time frame?

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1 Lawyer Answer

Amanda Bowden Houser

Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Jacksonville, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: You don'r 'file for separation' in NC so you don't have to worry about that. Leaving the state with a child could be a problem but if you are doing so because you legitimately fear for your safety it is doubtful you'd have any real problems especially if he is technically still active duty. One option would be to apply for a domestic violence protective order but that would require that you be able to prove actual abuse. Bottom line it may come down to you simply making a choice and letting the chips fall where they may but you should at least get a consultation with a local attorney first just to go over your options in more detail.

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