Domestic violence charges are very serious, and if you are convicted, you could face several penalties. Aside from criminal penalties, you will have to deal with many other economic and social consequences that could last for years. Under California law, domestic violence may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the specific charges and details of the case. Some common domestic violence charges are domestic battery and inflicting corporal injury to an intimate partner, among others. If you are charged with domestic violence, you will want to contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Criminal Penalties for Domestic Violence Charges
A criminal conviction of a felony domestic violence charge could result in a prison sentence along with fines and probation. You could also be required to attend anger management or similar training and education. Convicted felons are not allowed to vote. Misdemeanor domestic violence convictions could result in jail time as well as other penalties. Some domestic violence charges are “wobblers.” A wobbler is a crime that can be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony depending on the various factors involved in the specific case. Enhanced sentencing could apply in some instances. For example, if the charges can be considered under the “three strikes” law, the penalties become more severe after each offense.
Potential Economic Impact of a Domestic Violence Conviction
If you are convicted of domestic violence, you will suffer a lot more than criminal penalties. The conviction could greatly impact your finances. As a convicted criminal, you will likely have more difficulty getting a job, getting into college, and obtaining housing than others. The conviction will be part of your record and therefore any time someone requires a background check, the information will be found.
A criminal conviction may also impact your ability to work in your profession. Many types of professions require clean criminal records, such as working with children, driving a bus, and others. Some professional organizations do not allow you to retain your license if you have a criminal conviction. For example, airline pilots are not allowed a professional license if they have a felony conviction on their record. You must provide truthful information regarding a criminal record as well. In some cases, you could lose your job after a criminal conviction.
The Social Impact of a Domestic Violence Conviction
In addition to the economic and career-related impacts, you will also face a variety of social consequences following a domestic violence conviction. A domestic violence conviction will likely end your relationship. If you have children, you may be restricted from seeing them or you may need to have limited visits with someone to oversee them. If you have a restraining order against you, you will not be able to come near your former partner. A conviction could also prevent you from adopting a child in some cases.
There is a social stigma attached to convicted domestic violence offenders. You might have trouble maintaining relationships with your family and friends. As you can see, all areas of your life will be affected by a criminal domestic violence conviction. If you are facing domestic violence charges, do not take the situation lightly. Contact our attorneys at David Lehr Law at (805) 477-0070 to discuss your case today.