Legal Articles

Attorney Eddie FishmanEddie Fishman | Hopkins & Huebner, P.C. | Adel Office

Domestic abuse is defined under Iowa Code section 236.2(2) as any form of assault committed between:

  1. Family or household members who resided together at the time of the assault.
  2. Separated spouses or persons divorced from each other and not residing together at the time of the assault.
  3. Persons who are parents of the same minor child.
  4. Persons who have been family or household members residing together within the past year and are not residing together at the time of the assault.
  5. Persons who are in an intimate relationship or have been in an intimate relationship and have had contact within the past year of the assault. 

Who can be considered a family or household member?

Spouses, persons cohabiting, parents or other persons related by consanguinity or affinity are considered family or household members. However, a child under the age of eighteen of a family or household member is not considered a family or household member. 

How do you determine if individuals are cohabiting?

  • Factors that can be considered in determining whether individuals cohabit include:
  • A sexual relationship between the parties while sharing the same living quarters;
  • Sharing of income or expenses;
  • Joint use or ownership of property;
  • Whether the parties hold themselves out as husband and wife;
  • The continuity of the relationship;
  • The length of the relationship. 

What is an intimate relationship?

An intimate relationship is defined as a significant romantic involvement that need not include sexual involvement. An intimate relationship does not include casual social relationships or associations in a business or professional capacity. 

In determining whether persons are or have been in an intimate relationship, the court may consider the following nonexclusive list of factors:

  1. The duration of the relationship.
  2. The frequency of interaction.
  3. Whether the relationship has been terminated.
  4. The nature of the relationship, characterized by either party’s expectation of sexual or romantic involvement.

A person may be involved in an intimate relationship with more than one person at a time.