Asked in Criminal Law, Family Law and Child Custody for Oregon

Q: Is anything stopping me from going home?

I'm under investigation as a "sexual offender" which is bogus, I haven't been charged in almost three weeks, the voluntary 10-day non-contact agreement DHS had me sign expired a week ago, no restraining order, but my wife got "emergency custody" due to the investigation, and I haven't been able to get into my house because of my wife's dad standing guard with a gun (seriously). I'm not violent, have no criminal history, and I'm still on the lease there. I know I don't have custody rights, but I still need a place to live.

2 Lawyer Answers
Jessica Larsen
Jessica Larsen
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Salem, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: If you have criminal charges pending against you, you cannot have contact with the alleged victim due to an automatic no contact order that is imposed at the beginning of a criminal case. The house is still marital property, unless there was a legal separation or dissolution proceeding that distributed your assets between the two of you. You would also be prevented from returning home if you are in the process of dissolution and the judge has awarded exclusive use of the house to your wife. In the absence of a judgment or an award of exclusive use of the family home, there should be no reason you can't return home.

M. Nicole Clooten
M. Nicole Clooten
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Pendleton, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: To fully answer your question, I would need some more information, but in general, an emergency order or an "immediate danger" order generally includes that you are not to be around the children. My advice in these high-conflict situations is to stay away until you get in front of the court and they order otherwise. If by emergency custody you mean an immediate danger order, you will have to ask for an objection hearing to address the allegations there. Perhaps you could ask the police for a standby to retrieve some personal items or agree to have them delivered to a neutral location. You do not want a restraining order filed against you, as they are extremely restrictive and can cause a lot of problems with employment, criminal violations, ect.

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