Walton County Domestic Violence Lawyer
Domestic violence charges (legally referred to as “family violence”) are some of the most common charges in Georgia. Despite being common, domestic violence charges can greatly affect your record and for your life. A domestic violence lawyer can help you understand your options and help guide you through the Georgia criminal court process.
What Makes a Charge A “Family Violence” Offense?
In the State of Georgia any battery or assault (or related charge) that occurs between the following people constitutes an offense of family violence:
- Past or Present Spouses
- Parents of the Same Child Parents and Children
- Step Parents and Step Children
- Foster Parents and Foster Children
- Persons Currently or Formerly Living in the Same Household
An important and often-over-looked detail is that family violence includes anyone living in the same household, which can even include roommates or children.
Effects of a Family Violence Charge
While a family violence charge is not always an automatic felony in Georgia, the consequences are often more severe than other misdemeanors. For example, the penalties for each family violence conviction get more serious. For example, while a first family violence battery is a misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of 12 months of probation or confinement, a second family violence battery is a felony with a sentence range of one to five years. What’s more, a family violence conviction results in the loss of gun rights under federal law and the imposition of special conditions like the completion of the “family violence intervention program,” which lasts 24 weeks and must be paid for by the defendant.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime of family violence, it is imperative that you consult with an experienced attorney who can explore any relevant defenses or strategies for protecting one’s future or livelihood. Call us today for a free consultation!