Domestic Violence affects about 10 million people in the US each year. If you are a victim of domestic violence, or if you’ve been wrongly accused of this act you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer to make sure you’re treated fairly and safely.
Domestic Violence charges have far reaching consequences and a domestic violation conviction is not eligible for sealing or expungement. We provide experienced legal representation for victims and the accused in the Central Florida area. Contact an experienced Orlando domestic violence attorney at Smith & Eulo today.
What are the types of Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence does not have to be recurring violence against a family member. If there’s just one event of violent behavior, it qualifies as domestic violence. Florida law classifies various criminal offenses under the general category of domestic violence, including:
- Domestic battery and aggravated battery
- Domestic assault and aggravated assault
- Kidnapping and false imprisonment
- Elderly Abuse
- Harassment, stalking, and aggravated stalking
- Restraining order and no-contact order violations
- Sexual battery, rape, and other sex offenses,
- Any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member
It’s important to note that “family or household member” means spouses, persons related by blood, exes, persons living together as a family, and parents of a child in common.
What can I do if I’m the victim of domestic violence?
If you’re a victim of domestic violence, you can file an injunction against your abuser. Florida courts grant injunctions for protection against dating violence, domestic violence, sexual violence, and repeat violence. They keep your abuser from going anywhere near your home, place of work, car, and any other place where you’re vulnerable.
These injunctions only last for 15 days, but if the court permits it, a hearing with the injunction’s respondent will be scheduled within those first 15. The hearing will determine if more permanent injunctions need to be put in place, and any domestic violence charges will be filed against the abuser.
Injunctions are given out when there’s “clear and convincing” evidence, and the temporary ones don’t require a hearing with the respondent to be filed. An Orlando domestic violence attorney can help you file an injunction against the person who acted violently towards you.
What types of domestic violence injunctions are there?
There are five types of domestic violence injunctions, that vary based on relationship;
- Domestic Violence Injunction is for spouses, former spouses, people related by blood or marriage, people living together, and people that share a child
- Repeat Violence injunction is for situations where two or more violent acts have happened in the past 6 months before filing an injunction
- Sexual Violence Injunction is for violent sexual acts
- Dating Violence Injunctions are appropriate when violence occurs between two individuals who had a romantic/intimate relationship in the 6 months before the injunction petition.
- Stalking Violence Injunction are used when someone is repeatedly being followed or harassed by another individual for no reason
Regardless of your situation, a lawyer can help you find the best way for you to feel safe after you’ve experienced domestic violence.
What if I’ve been wrongfully accused of Domestic Violence?
If you’ve been wrongly accused of domestic violence, and/or you’ve received an injunction where you’re the respondent, it’s imperative to contact an experienced Orlando domestic violence lawyer.
These injunctions impact your ability to be around your family, the outcomes of disputes for child custody, child support, and more. By working with an attorney, we can craft a defense that will diminish or dismiss your domestic violence charges and the injunction against you. Some defenses against domestic violence charges include:
- Stand your ground
- Defense of others
- Mutual combat
If you’ve already been arrested for domestic violence, you still need to contact an experienced attorney. If you violate your conditions of release, you’re committing a first degree misdemeanor. This is punishable by 1 year in jail or 1 year on probation and up to $1,000 in fines.
More than likely, your conditions of release prohibit you from returning to your home or having any contact with the alleged victim. A lawyer can help you request a modification to your release conditions so you can return home or have mediated contact with the alleged victim.
Whatever your situation, do not ignore your domestic violence charges. A domestic violence conviction will result in the following penalties:
- court fees of more than $1,500
- at least one year of probation with no early termination
- completion of a batterers intervention program
- 5 days in jail if the victim was injured
- restrictive probation or community control
- revocation of your concealed weapons permit
- if you are not an american citizen, it can be used as grounds for deportation
The penalties of a domestic violence conviction can be hefty–but they’re avoidable. Call our Orlando offices at 407-930-8914 for a free consultation.