Family Assault Defense Attorneys
Domestic violence law is a subsection of family law covering injuries inflicted by family members. A domestic violence lawyer needs basic knowledge of psychology to understand family dynamics and the motivations of both victim and defendant.
Domestic violence is the injury of another person in the home, usually a spouse or life partner, but it can also be a child, a parent, or another family member. The form of domestic violence can be physical, emotional, sexual, psychological, or a combination of some or all of these. There are both federal and state domestic violence laws—each with its own provisions and penalties.
A Serious Offense
When someone has been arrested or is going to be arrested for or charged with domestic violence, he or she needs to know that this is a serious offense that all state and federal legal systems take very seriously. The days when many police and prosecutors didn’t take domestic violence seriously are over, and judges make significant efforts to punish perpetrators of domestic violence, especially if the violence involves children. A domestic violence conviction can mean:
- Time in jail or prison
- A criminal record
- Mandatory anger management classes
- Being barred from owning a firearm or having a firearm in your possession
- Negative effects on your efforts to get a job requiring a security clearance, a visa extension or a green card
In addition, a domestic violation conviction can affect your access to your children and your home if a restraining order is put in place.
False Domestic Violence Charges
Each day thousands of people are falsely accused of domestic violence. Here are some reasons why these false accusations occur. The first and most prevalent is a pending divorce or child custody battle between the parties. One party will accuse the other of domestic violence in order to gain a leg up in the family court proceedings. This causes the accused of having to defend himself in both criminal and family court. These expenses can completely overwhelm a person of medium income. The police and courts do nothing to stop these types of complaints and the accused will spend months and years defending themselves.
The next reason why false allegations are filed is because the accusers feels betrayed by the accused in some way. Usually this is due to a nasty break up or when a new romantic partner comes into the scene. This is plain and simple a revenge charge. The good news is that as time passes by the accuser usually loses interest and the case can be dismissed.
The last two categories are even more offensive. If you accuse your partner of domestic violence you will be given priority on public housing and public assistance lists. As long as you keep claiming victimhood, the welfare authorities will assign you a caseworker and pay for all of your needs. This is the most offensive abuse of the system and it happens everyday.
What Is a Domestic Violence Attorney?
A domestic violence lawyer deals with violence that includes non-physical assault like stalking, silent phone calls, threatening language, and actions such as touching. Domestic violence attorneys also deal with domestic violence within a home. Domestic violence can be a very serious crime and you will probably need an attorney to handle all of the legal issues that you will face. Domestic violence lawyers not only deal with just hitting or fighting but also a chronic abuse of power. Please contact a domestic violence lawyer if you are ever involved in a domestic violence dispute.
A domestic violence defense lawyer can help an accused individual at every step of the legal process, including:
- during an investigation
- in talks with the prosecutor during the charging phase
- with bail following an arrest
- at arraignment
- at trial, if one occurs, and
- during the sentencing phase and hearing.
With an experienced defense attorney, an individual charged with a domestic violence offense such as assault or battery, spousal rape, or allowing children to witness violence in the home has a better chance of getting fair treatment in the legal system.
A defense attorney will work to limit the damage that a domestic violence arrest or conviction can do to the accused. For example, depending on the facts of the case, it may be possible to get a dismissal of the charge(s) or a reduction of the charges.
Facts About Domestic Violence Law
A domestic violence lawyer deals with all of the bureaucracy of a domestic violence suit. In most domestic violence cases, the victims are usually women. Though the majority of the cases involving domestic violence involve women, domestic violence attorneys defend both males and females in domestic violence lawsuits. Even though it might seem to be expensive to hire a domestic violence lawyer, it is a good idea to do so since domestic violence lawyers specialize in cases that involve domestic violence.
Dropping Domestic Violence Charges
Prosecutors are extremely reluctant to drop charges in a domestic violence case. As we have discussed at length, prosecuting those accused of domestic violence is very politically popular and is supported strongly by all politicians. Another reason that prosecutors do not like to drop domestic violence charges against a defendant, even if the alleged victim is requesting it, is because they are afraid that the accuser will harm the alleged victim again, and then the careers of the prosecutors are on the line.
It is just easier for prosecutors in domestic violence cases to paint all of the defendants with the same brush and try to prosecute as many people as possible, regardless of the facts of a case. Often, the alleged victim did not contact the police and wants no part of the prosecution of a loved one. In most cases prosecutors will push the alleged victim into cooperating, and even tell the Court that the victim is still interested in going forward with the charges, when they have clearly told the prosecutor that they do not wish to cooperate. One prosecutor was recently featured on a national news program explaining how successful the office is in obtaining domestic violence convictions. These cases have become political tools.
These are very difficult cases. Because prosecutors are afraid that they will look weak on crime, they will seek a plea deal from every defendant in a domestic violence case, no matter how weak the case is
Talk with an Attorney to Protect Your Rights
Everyone has the right to competent and committed legal representation. Contact a qualified domestic violence defense attorney today to discuss your rights and your options.
Domestic Violence FAQ
What Happens If I Can’t Afford a Lawyer?
The Unites State Constitution guarantees every criminal defense charged with a crime a righ to a free attorney. The court in your jurisdiction will appoint you an attorney if you cannot afford one.
Can I Hire My Own Attorney?
As long as you do not interfere with the administration of the Court you can hire any licensed attorney that you wish to represent you in court.
What Should I Look For in a Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer?
EXPERIENCE. When you hire any attorney make sure that lawyer has experience in the legal area that you need help in. In many smaller jurisdictions there may be lawyers that are jack of all trades. However, look for one that has handled your type of legal problem successfully in the past.
How Much Do Lawyers Cost?
Good attorneys are in high demand and most have spent years perfecting their skills. Thus, they can be very expensive. When in comes to criminal defense you should strive to hire the very best you can afford. Because at the end of the day the question becomes-how much is your freedom worth?