Domestic Violence Defense FAQ

I've been accused of domestic violence. How serious are my charges?

Like many other offenses, there are numerous definitions of domestic violence that depend on various factors and circumstances of the incident. Some of them are categorized as misdemeanors, but many of them can be considered serious felonies.

Classification of a domestic violence charge is based on:

  • Whether or not unwanted physical contact occurred
  • Whether or not serious bodily harm occurred
  • Whether or not dangerous weapons were involved
  • Whether or not strangulation occurred
  • Whether or not the accused has had previous domestic violence charges

Can my spouse/partner drop the charges?

Contrary to popular belief, domestic violence is not "pressed" by the individuals harmed in the incident. Once the accused is arrested, it is the state that is charging the individual, not another citizen. The only way charges can be dropped completely before a trial or plea deal is if the judge finds that a prosecutor's evidence is not strong enough to substantiate the charge.

Why can't I post bail right after my domestic violence charge?

Those arrested for domestic battery can post bail, however, there is a minimum holding period for 12 hours in these cases. This should be explained to you by police during the arrest and intake process. If it is not, it is important note this to your legal representative.

I've been charged and released. What can I do to help my defense?

There are several key things to do once you make bail from a domestic violence arrest. It is absolutely key that those accused do not try to contact or confront the spouse or significant other involved in the incident. Further contact is likely to complicate charges. Even if you need to find another place to stay while this matter is resolved, it is in your best interests.

It is also important to document any evidence of the altercation that points towards self-defense. Many domestic disturbances involve more than one individual acting violently. Taking pictures of damaged property or any injuries, no matter how minor, are important to your eventual defense. For other proper steps to take after an arrest, contact an experienced Las Vegas domestic violence lawyer who can help you prepare a defense.

What penalties am I facing?

The penalties you face for a domestic violence charge depend on the circumstances of the incident and whether or not it is eligible for a misdemeanor or felony classification.

Frequently, however, there are a number of unforeseen penalties for those convicted:

  • Jail or prison time
  • Fines ranging from $1,000 to $15,000
  • Counseling
  • Community service
  • Loss of firearm license
  • Reduced child custody or visitation time
  • Removal from the family home

Probation is usually not a possibility for these cases in lieu of jail or prison time. Restraining or protection orders can also result from these charges, making a situation even more difficult to navigate and putting more restrictions on your life.

We invite you to call us at Brown Law Offices. Our criminal defense team is ready to walk you through this process and provide you the answers you need to understand your domestic violence charge.