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Celebrity Divorce

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt Divorce

The divorce between Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt symbolizes the struggles many Americans experience during divorce. Money and fame aside, both parties are experiencing what many unhappy couples can relate to: feelings of betrayal and anger, coupled with the desire to punish the other spouse through the legal system.

Child Custody Cases & Child Abuse Claims

As we watch the couple’s divorce take a dark turn with the introduction of child abuse allegations, it’s important to understand the couple’s legal obligations and how they might affect the outcome of their case.

The Los Angeles Police Department has not weighed in on any charges of child abuse against Brad Pitt, but the FBI is still investigating a claim of child abuse during an international flight. If the abuse was only verbal, it would amount to a “perceived” threat. In this case, there’s also the accusation of physical abuse as well.

These accusations will be treated as legitimate to protect the welfare of the children. The L.A. County Department of Children and Family Services is pursuing their own investigation into these child abuse claims.

Although any claim of child abuse should be thoroughly investigated and considered a real threat, it’s an unfortunate reality that some contentious divorces involve false accusations against another party.

In child custody cases, some individuals make unjustified claims to gain an advantage over their spouse. The American Bar Association (ABA) has specific penalties for spouses attempting to gain an advantage by making unfounded accusations, including fines and jail time.

In fact, according to, 70% of claims of child abuse allegations are deemed as “unnecessary or false.” Many of the people who make these claims, do so as a tool to acquire money, property, or child custody.

But even if the accusations are true, the spouse who makes these claims has an obligation to inform law enforcement immediately after the incident occurs, not at a later time when the incident can be used as an opportunity to obtain a favorable position. By not reporting this abuse, the party who makes the claim of child abuse may be culpable in the crime by not reporting it sooner.

This isn’t the case with this celebrity couple. Police were informed of the incident by witnesses at the airport.

Ms. Jolie and Mr. Pitt’s choice of high-profile legal counsel suggests that this isn’t going to be an amicable separation. If the accusations against Mr. Pitt prove to be unmerited, hopefully, both parties will agree to settle their differences in court, and not in the public arena. If the accusations prove to be valid, Mr. Pitt will be fighting two different lawsuits: one civil and the other criminal.

Celebrity divorce has the added challenge of being in the public eye. Learn more about how we handle celebrity divorce.

Posted September 23, 2016
by: MFL Team

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