Fighting spousal abuse charges can seem like an uphill battle. If you have been arrested for or charged with a domestic violence offense such as abusing your spouse, you should obtain the guidance of an experienced lawyer.
Our West Palm Beach spousal abuse lawyers have successfully represented individuals facing misdemeanor and felony family violence charges. Experienced domestic violence attorneys are here to help you mount the most aggressive defense possible.
Under Florida law, domestic violence is not considered a distinct offense. For example, to convict someone of domestic battery, the state would have to prove the elements of battery and that the alleged victim is a family or household member of the person accused.
Types of Spousal Abuse
Spousal abuse is one of the most common types of domestic violence. Generally speaking, violence against a spouse can include various forms of physical, sexual, and/or emotional abuse. Spousal abuse can result in criminal consequences if the activity involved constitutes domestic violence. Spousal abuse means that a person committed one of the following acts against a romantic partner or significant other:
- Aggravated battery
- Sexual assault
- Sexual battery
- Aggravated Stalking
- False imprisonment
A lawyer in West Palm Beach could help someone accused of any of these forms of spousal abuse.
Role of Domestic Relationships
Any criminal offense that results in the physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member should be represented by a lawyer. The term family or household member includes people related by blood or marriage, current or former spouses, people who are currently living in the same home as a family or who have previously lived together as a family, and people who have a child in common irrespective of whether they have been married. State law requires that the individuals be currently residing in the same house or have previously resided in the same house to be considered family or household members. The only exception under the statute is for individuals who have a child in common.
Potential Penalties for Spousal Abuse
The penalties for spousal abuse charges vary depending on whether the underlying offense is a felony or misdemeanor. Spousal violence charges can be enhanced if the accused has prior domestic abuse convictions and/or certain aggravating circumstances apply such as domestic battery by strangulation. Additionally, if a person is convicted of committing an act of domestic violence that resulted in bodily harm or injury, he or she must serve a minimum of five days in jail.
A conviction can result in incarceration, fines, required completion of Batterer’s Intervention program, probation, counseling, and community service. In the civil context, spousal abuse charges can adversely affect any pending divorce or custody cases. When there are allegations of spousal abuse, a court may issue a protective order, which imposes certain restrictions on the person accused of committing acts of domestic abuse such as no contact. A lawyer in West Palm Beach could help someone mitigate these penalties if they have been accused of spousal abuse.
Talk to a West Palm Beach Spousal Abuse Attorney
There are few matters more contentious and emotionally fraught than family violence cases. Our West Palm Beach spousal abuse lawyers have extensive experience handling these cases and are dedicated to providing compassionate, knowledgeable, and aggressive representation to all potential clients. Take immediate action to protect yourself by contacting an attorney to explore your defense options.