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Perceptions of domestic violence aren’t always accurate

On Behalf of | Mar 6, 2019 | Domestic Violence

Injuries to the head or face may be indications that an individual in Virginia has experienced domestic abuse. This is according to a study conducted by a doctor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. However, there may be other signs that doctors need to look out for. For instance, an injury to the arm or leg could also be a signal that abuse has occurred.

An injury to a bone in the hand could indicate that an individual was defending when the abuse occurred. Conversely, an injured bone closer to the wrist could indicate that an individual had committed an assault. It is important that abuse victims are allowed to talk to medical professionals while they are alone. In many cases, they will seek treatment while being accompanied by the person who caused the injuries.

By allowing a victim to speak to a doctor in private, it makes it easier to be honest about how the injury occurred. In some cases, a doctor may be legally obligated to report an injury to the police. In Massachusetts, this is generally true if an incident involved a gun or a knife. If an individual has been burned in a domestic incident, a doctor might also be required to alert the authorities to what happened.

A domestic violence incident may have an impact on child custody proceedings. This is because a judge will want to see that a child is free from physical, emotional or other types of harm while with a parent. Therefore, a judge may order that a parent who has been involved in an altercation with another family member be given limited rights to a child. This would be done to protect the child’s best interests.