If a person is accused of a crime against another person, such as assault or harassment, then a normal condition of their bail is that they have no contact with the alleged victim. But what happens if the alleged victim is a family or household member? Under Florida law, this is considered an incident of domestic violence. This classification can trigger additional court proceedings that could eliminate the contact between the two parties for the length of the case.
A Winter Park domestic violence lawyer represents defendants and could not only defend against these charges in criminal court but also minimize the effect that any protective orders will have on their lives. The goal for a defense attorney is to both defeat the charges at the center of the case and preserve your current lifestyle while the case moves forward.
State law uses the term “domestic violence” to describe alleged criminal activity against certain people. Florida Statute § 741.28 defines a household member as:
The same statute says that courts must label an alleged crime as an example of domestic violence if the supposed victim fits into one of these categories. In addition, the event must involve an act of actual violence or threats of harm. A Winter Park domestic violence attorney could help someone better understand why courts have labeled an incident in this way.
The main concern after an arrest for alleged domestic violence is the criminal accusation at the core of the case. These often include assaults, batteries, stalking, or harassment. Prosecutors handling these cases will pursue the charges in much the same way as they would any other case that does not involve allegations of domestic violence.
However, domestic violence cases carry special penalties upon conviction. According to Fla. Stat. § 741.283, any conviction requires a judge to sentence a person to at least ten days in jail.
Even a mere arrest for a domestic violence case can change a person’s life. Alleged victims can ask a court to create a restraining order that ends the halts between the two people. This may force a person to move out of a home, take a leave of absence from work, or lose contact with their children. A lawyer could argue against the need for these orders and promote a powerful defense against the core criminal charges.
Individuals who have been charged with criminal acts that are classified as domestic violence have multiple factors to consider. On top of the already serious criminal accusations that would stand regardless of the identity of the alleged victim, we need to consider any potential protective orders that a court may issue in instances of family violence. While domestic violence is not a crime in and of itself in Winter Park, it does open the door for enhanced penalties and the loss of child custody.
A Winter Park domestic violence lawyer represents individuals named as defendants in both criminal cases involving family violence and civil restraining orders. They fight to protect not only their freedom but also their rights as a fully functional family member. Contact Umansky Law today to see how we could assist you.
The Umansky Law Firm Criminal Defense & Injury Attorneys