California law recognizes domestic violence as a serious and complex issue, treating cases with an appropriate level of gravity. The state uses broad terms to define incidents of domestic violence, which includes any form of harm done to another within the same household or family. Whether you have been the victim of domestic violence or have been the one accused, it is vital that you speak with a qualified and experienced Huntington Beach domestic violence lawyer as soon as possible.
Domestic violence cases are heavy legal proceedings with outcomes that can impact the lives of all parties involved. The significant penalties imposed on those convicted serve to articulate the protections afforded to those who have suffered harm from domestic violence, while the legal options available to those accused demonstrate the equal opportunity everyone has to adequate defense. Whichever situation you are facing, the lawyers at Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP, can help.
The attorney team at Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP, has extensive experience handling defense and family law matters in and around Huntington Beach, representing both victims and the accused in domestic violence cases for over 40 years combined.
Our lawyers can navigate the complexities of the family court and criminal justice system, providing an individualized approach with an emphasis on advocacy for our clients. This ensures we can push for the most favorable outcome in your case.
Whether you have been the victim of domestic violence or have been wrongly accused of committing an act of domestic violence, reach out to one of our team members today for a consultation. During the initial consultation, we can discuss the details of your situation, answer questions, and recommend proper next steps.
California recognizes several forms of abuse as encompassing domestic violence, including physical, emotional, sexual, and financial abuse. The offense moves from assault to domestic violence once that act is committed against a family member, intimate partner, or member of the household. This includes, but is not limited to:
Domestic violence can manifest in several ways, including:
Since California law accepts a broad spectrum of behaviors as constituting an act of domestic violence, misclassification is also an issue, leading to wrongful accusations.
Misclassifying behavior as an act of domestic violence can happen as the result of several potential reasons:
These difficult and complex situations highlight the potential for misjudgment in domestic violence cases and emphasize the need for a thorough investigation, substantial evidence, and strong legal counsel.
Restraining orders, also known as protective orders, are legally enforceable documents that impose strict rules intended to protect the alleged victim and restrict the accused individual.
When police arrive at the scene of an alleged domestic violence incident, they are under a legal obligation to protect the safety of the presumed victim and will take legal action to ensure the alleged victim is not vulnerable to further potential abuse. Removing the alleged aggressor from the situation, they will usually proceed to work with the abused to secure a temporary restraining order immediately following the incident.
Generally, these orders forbid contact between the accused and the alleged victim. With a restraining order in place, the accused is not permitted to contact the victim in any fashion, approach them physically, or visit their home or place of work. Most restraining orders set a defined distance from which the accused must keep away from the victim.
Restraining orders represent a valuable form of protection for those who’ve suffered abuse. Your domestic violence attorney can help you file an order as soon as possible if you’ve been the victim of abuse at the hands of a domestic partner or relative. Restraining orders can provide a quick form of reprieve while further legal actions are taken to address the suspected domestic violence.
Any intentional violation of a restraining order is a serious offense for which a family court will penalize harshly. Prison time, heavy fines, and additional penalties are common punishments imposed by judges overseeing cases. The subject of an order may also choose to petition the court, however, to request alterations or to attempt to regain lost visitation rights.
It is important, if you are the subject of the restraining order, that you follow it completely while you pursue a defense of your own. Our attorneys can equally help guide you through the petition process and defend your innocence.
Domestic violence has a significant impact on other legal determinations in California, such as divorce proceedings and child custody. Since all child custody determinations are made with the child’s interest in mind, there is a legal presumption against awarding custody to a parent who has committed abuse in any form. This offers security and safety to any parent who has experienced domestic violence, as the court seeks to keep them and their children protected.
Unfortunately, for a parent who has been wrongly accused of committing domestic violence, the burden of proof often lies on them to successfully rebut this presumption; otherwise, they are unlikely to be granted custody. Evidence will be a critical factor during the family court proceedings, as the child’s safety and well-being will always be of primary concern.
The attorneys at Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP, have extensive experience helping those on both sides of domestic violence cases and strive to assert your individual and parental rights, pursuing a fair outcome in every case.
A: To dismiss a domestic violence case in California, a defense attorney would have to assess the evidence for weaknesses, inconsistencies, and inadequacy. They may also attempt to demonstrate evidence for self-defense, negotiate with the prosecution, or push for a dismissal if the overall evidence against the accused is weak.
Getting a domestic violence case dismissed is possible but quite difficult. Working with a qualified and skilled domestic violence attorney is crucial in exploring all available legal options.
A: Domestic violence cases are handled by both the criminal and family court systems in California. If police are called to an incident, a criminal charge and a possible restraining order are usually placed against the abuser. California law treats domestic violence seriously, imposing criminal consequences that could include jail time and civil damages. However, the accused have a right to quality legal counsel, as well, and should be fairly defended by a qualified attorney.
A: The average sentence for domestic violence in California varies depending on whether or not the act was considered a felony or a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor will mean up to a year in jail, while a felony can lead to a two – to six-year conviction in a state prison. Generally, the court will determine how to charge domestic violence based on the circumstances regarding the offense, the existing criminal record of the accused, and the extent of the accuser’s injuries.
A: Domestic violence cases can vary in length based on several factors. Some cases can be resolved within a few months, while others can take up to a year or more. These timeframes can be affected by the complexity of the case, the evidence, the legal arguments, the court schedules, and whether or not the case goes to trial. It is vital that you work with a skilled defense or domestic violence attorney as soon as possible.
Domestic violence cases are serious legal matters that carry significant penalties, which can impact future determinations, such as child custody. Therefore, it is imperative, whether you are a victim of domestic violence or have been accused of violating the law in this manner, that you speak with a qualified domestic violence lawyer as soon as possible. To speak with a member of our team at Quinn & Dworakowski, LLP, contact our office today.
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