Domestic violence is a serious situation that can ultimately lead to death if the cycle of abuse continues uninterrupted. Even where people feel alone in a situation, there is help. Taking a closer look at the issues concerning domestic violence, we will reveal how our domestic violence attorneys can help.
Most people think they know what the term means, but it can involve more than a spouse or significant other abusing the other. Verbal abuse also falls into this category, even though there may not be any physical contact. Where an individual constantly harasses their partner or poses threats, this is considered one form of domestic abuse.
Additionally, physical abuse doesn’t have to be perpetrated by a spouse; it can be committed by anyone with whom the victim has a close connection. This means an individual who stalks and attempts to coerce an ex-lover is also considered a domestic abuser.
A restraining order is one way that the law can help a victim of domestic abuse stay safe. A domestic violence restraining order can last anywhere from a year to five years. If the offender is deemed especially dangerous, a judge may grant a restraining order for the lifetime of the victim. Even when the order had a limited duration, the victim can renew the order for another term, if the individual still feels threatened by the abuser.
It’s common knowledge that a restraining order can limit or prohibit contact between the concerned parties, but a judge may approve more stipulations. For example, the abuser may be forced to surrender firearms or attend anger management counseling. The order can also be expanded to protect children, as well as other family and friends who feel threatened by the individual.
Some people doubt that a restraining order will do any good because it’s just a piece of paper. To the contrary, violating the order can result in jail time. The violator can be charged with contempt of court, a felony, or a misdemeanor depending on the facts and circumstances. Repeated violations will likely result in felony charges. For this reason, it’s important to report all violations, no matter how trivial or brief the violation seemed.
In cases involving domestic abuse, a lawyer is your advocate, acting on your behalf and preventing the other party from using legal proceedings to his/her advantage. The attorney ensures your rights are protected and advises you on the best course of action for your circumstances. This can mean collecting evidence for trial and speaking to witnesses to help prove your case.
Even before a case goes to trial, an experienced attorney can help you get a restraining order or one of various other types of protection orders. There may be some things your lawyer is unable to do, depending on your situation. Communication is key. Don’t be afraid to discuss your case with him/her and ask the attorney about whatever concerns you may have. Upon hiring your lawyer, don’t be afraid to interview them about their background. It’s a good idea to know how much experience they have had with domestic abuse cases, as well as how often they have lost their cases.
If you’re in Santa Clara, California and need the help of an experienced domestic abuse attorney, contact the Gomez Edwards Law Group for an initial consultation. Ms. Gomez can evaluate your situation and determine your best course of action. Don’t hesitate. You deserve to live a happy life, free from the violence and abuse that you have already tolerated for too long.