Bay Area Domestic Violence Lawyer
A recent study found domestic violence is on the rise in California since the pandemic, with 40% of women surveyed claiming to have experienced it at some point in their lives. The survey, conducted by the California Women’s Health Survey, showed that younger women are more likely to be victims of domestic violence than older women.
If you are found guilty of domestic violence, you might face very serious repercussions, such as jail time, restraining orders, loss of child custody, and a permanent criminal record. Immigration problems provide significantly more challenges for non-citizens. Whether you are in possession of a green card, an H1B, an F1, or another type of visa, you must take into account the repercussions in a criminal court and the grave repercussions if immigration courts discover the conviction.
Recently, the State of California Department of Justice reported an increase of 6.0% in the violent crime rate from 2020 to 2021. While this is a significant problem, it’s also important to remember that not all charges are accurate regarding domestic violence.
Unfortunately, being falsely accused of domestic violence is not uncommon, and these accusations happen more often than people realize. These allegations can cause major problems in a person’s life – even if they are innocent – ranging from social stigma to job loss.
If you are currently facing domestic violence allegations, it’s crucial you take action and reach out to Huff Legal immediately. The outcome of your case could improve drastically with the help of an experienced lawyer- in some instances, this could mean the difference between a misdemeanor or felony charge. No matter the severity of your situation, do not hesitate to seek professional help.
WHY CHOOSE HUFF LEGAL?
As a former police officer and patrol supervisor and his time spent as a United States District Court Judicial Law Clerk to the Chief Judge, Attorney Huff knows how to navigate all levels of the complex criminal law system.
At Huff Legal, we have more than 55 years of combined experience dealing with various complex criminal legal matters and have helped just over 1,500 clients. These situations can oftentimes be challenging, which is why you need a team of experts on your side to get you the outcome you deserve!
When you work with Huff Legal, you can be confident we will do everything in our power to get the best results possible. Our team is results-driven and we are committed to achieving the best possible outcome for each and every one of our clients.
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What Qualifies as Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence can take many forms, but it always refers to violence or harm inflicted by one person on another with whom they are closely related or have been intimate in the past. Domestic violence is not simply limited to causing physical harm; it encompasses emotional abuse, financial fraud, neglect, and endangerment as well. If you put someone in a situation where they are endangered, or their quality of life deteriorates in some way, you could be charged with domestic violence. Any physical contact that occurs during a tense moment with a close family member, no matter the level of force or intention, can also be charged as domestic violence.
Huff Legal is dedicated to ensuring everyone gets a chance to have their day in court. We know how important it is for your story to be heard, and we will ensure that it’s communicated in the best way possible. With our experience, we’ll be able to get you the best outcome possible, whether that means dismissed charges or a reduction to a less serious offense. HuffLegal will also always support you throughout this sometimes-overwhelming legal process, so you don’t have to face everything alone.
False Allegations In Domestic Violence Cases
Unfortunately, sometimes people make false domestic violence allegations in an attempt to damage the character of their spouse or ex. This is particularly common during divorce proceedings, child custody cases, and other difficult family law situations.
At Huff Legal, we will not tolerate the manipulation of the courts under false pretenses. We are prepared to defend anyone who is being held liable under these circumstances. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence or of false allegations of domestic abuse, we can provide consultations and help determine the best course of action.
Domestic Violence as a Felony or Misdemeanor
In California, charges for domestic violence can be filed as either a felony or misdemeanor, depending on the prosecutor’s discretion. The prosecutor has to review all of the evidence and, based on things like the severity of injuries (if any), decide what kind of charge to file. This is called a “wobbler” because the decision to file one charge or the other isn’t set in stone. The amount of damage done usually determines the severity of the charge filed. A misdemeanor will likely be charged if someone only has minor injuries. But if there are broken bones or more major injuries, felony charges will probably result.
Your past history of criminal activity will also largely affect the prosecutor’s decision to file a felony or misdemeanor charge. If you are convicted of a felony domestic violence charge, you may have to serve significant jail time as well as be required to pay restitution, fines and take counseling classes. If the court finds that you are a danger to the victim, they may order a restraining order against you. This means no contact whatsoever with the victim, even if it’s indirect through friends or others who call on your behalf.
If you’re accused of domestic violence in the Bay Area, having a lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the law is key to increasing your chances of getting a favorable resolution. In more serious cases, an attorney may be able to provide facts that could lead to charges being lowered from felony to misdemeanor. Our Bay Area domestic violence attorneys deal with both felony and misdemeanor charges. In less serious cases where you are only charged with a misdemeanor, we can work to keep you out of jail or reduce the charges to an infraction or have them dismissed entirely.
What Are the Domestic Violence Laws in California?
In California, the penalties for domestic violence are severe. The laws focus on crimes against intimate partners, such as a spouse or partner, as well as children. Child abuse is also very common in cases of domestic violence.
Various laws make up California’s domestic violence legislation. These often target unique aspects of the crime, as well as whether the victim is an adult or a child. It’s not uncommon for a person charged with domestic violence to also be charged with several other offenses.
Here are some of the most common charges:
Penal Code 273.5 PC - Corporal Injury to a Spouse or Cohabitant
According to this penal code, it is illegal to cause a physical injury that leads to trauma. This traumatic condition can result from striking one’s intimate partner in some violent way and causing an injury, big or small. For example, a light bruise or even a very slight red mark or swelling.
If you are convicted of Penal Code 273.5, you may face a misdemeanor charge with one year in county jail or a felony charge that could result in three years of imprisonment in state prison.
Penal Code 273d PC - Child Abuse
Penal Code 273d makes it illegal to hurt a child using physical force if the act was done out of cruelty and caused any type of harm.
Although the law permits spanking a child as long as it is considered “reasonable,” there are limits to what can be done before it becomes classified as abuse.
Penal Code 273(a) PC - Child Endangerment
The penal code outlines that it is a crime to knowingly endanger or harm a child “in your care or custody.” For example, if you are driving drunk with a child in the car, or leaving them unattended in an unsafe situation.
Penal Code 243(e)(1) PC - Domestic Battery
If you use force or violence against a person who is close to you, including your fiancé, girlfriend, boyfriend, former spouse, parent of your child/children, or current spouse, it is oftentimes considered a misdemeanor crime.
How Can a Lawyer Help With Your Assault & Battery Charges?
Depending on the circumstances of your case, we may be able to have your charges reduced, or even completely dismissed. We defend people accused of assault and battery, whether it’s a misdemeanor or a felony, in a variety of different offenses:
- Fights at bars or nightclubs
- Street fights
- School or workplace fights
- Domestic violence cases
- Sexual assault and battery
- Assault & Battery of a police officer
California misdemeanor assault convictions can result in fines up to $1,000 and/or six months in jail. A battery conviction may result in a fine up to $2,000 or one year in prison. Special circumstances may result in increased penalties for either crime. But, can every criminal lawyer in the Bay Area handle every type of assault case? The simple answer to this question is no. Not all criminal defense lawyers have the same amount of experience or knowledge. At Huff Legal, we have years of experience handling all types of criminal cases, and can help you with the following criminal charges:
Penal Code 245.2 PC - Assault with a Deadly Weapon
California Penal Code Section 245.2 defines Assault with a Deadly Weapon as using force or violence upon another person with deadly weapon, and that force or violence is likely to result in great bodily injury.
Anyone convicted of assault with a deadly weapon can face a jail term of up to four years or a fine of $10,000, or even both.
Penal Code 243.4 PC - Sexual Assault
Penal code 243.4 PC, also know as either sexual assault or sexual battery, can be defined as any sexual act or contact that takes place on another person without their consent. The seriousness of this offence varies depending on the kind of sexual assault, and like other assaults in California, it may be either a felony or a misdemeanour. In order for a conviction to take place, the defendant must demonstrate that the victim did not give consent to the action.
Penal Code 241 PC - Assault on a Police Officer
An individual who commits an act of violence against a police officer while they are performing their duties can be charged with a misdemeanor and punished with up to one year in county jail and a $2,000 fine. A conviction for aggravated assault on a police officer can carry a penalty of up to three years in a county jail or $10,000 fine or both.
Common Questions for an Assault and Battery Attorney
What should I do if I am charged with Assault & Battery?
The best course of action when charged with assault and battery is to seek the counsel of an experienced battery attorney. Your lawyer will hear your perspective, gather any necessary additional evidence, and then propose a plan for defending you.
An assault victim may also file a civil lawsuit and seek damages from you. In this situation, you will require an experienced civil litigation lawyer to defend you. At Huff Legal, we are also experienced in civil litigation and have a team of attorneys ready to defend you!
What are the possible defenses to an assault charge?
There are several defenses someone charged with assault can utilize, including:
- No intention to commit assault
- Defense of others
- Inability to commit the assault
- The victim consented
There may be other defense options that are reasonable, depending on the details of your situation.
Can I be charged with assault for defending myself?
You are completely exculpated for assault charges if you defend yourself or a third party from harm using reasonable force.
Can they charge me with assault for mistakenly assaulting the wrong person?
It is still possible to be charged with assault if you assaulted the wrong person by mistake. The prosecution must only prove that you had the intent to commit assault, regardless of who was assaulted.
What Are the Punishments for a Domestic Violence Conviction in the Bay Area?
If convicted of domestic violence in California, you could experience the following life-altering consequences:
- Jail time
- A restraining order
- Loss of child custody and visitation
- Financial penalties
- Immigration problems and deportation
- Loss of your right to own a firearm
- Damage to your reputation
- A lasting criminal record
Contact a Bay Area Domestic Violence Lawyer Today
If you have been accused of domestic violence in the Bay Area, it is critical that you seek representation from a reputable and experienced domestic violence lawyer. Huff Legal has a wealth of experience defending clients against these charges, and we will work tirelessly to get the best possible outcome for your case. Our attorneys have extensive knowledge of the law and are well-versed in the legal system, so you can be confident that you are receiving high-quality representation. Call us today to schedule a consultation.
LET HUFF HELP YOU
As a former police officer and patrol supervisor and his time spent as a United States District Court Judicial Law Clerk to the Chief Judge, Attorney Huff knows how to navigate all levels of the complex criminal law system. We also have more than 55 years of combined experience dealing with various complex criminal legal matters and have helped just over 1,500 clients over the past few years.
Why Huff Is Your Best Option For Criminal Defense
55+ Years of Combined Experience
At Huff Legal, we have more than 55 years of combined experience dealing with complex criminal legal matters, which can oftentimes be quite challenging. In order to get the outcome you deserve, you need a team of experienced attorneys on your side, who can help you navigate the legal system, so you can move past this situation and focus on the life ahead of you!
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We have a proven track record of success and are dedicated to our clients’ best interests. If you’re looking for a law firm that will always have your back, look no further than Huff Legal. Just have a look at some of our amazing client reviews over here!
1,500+ Happy Clients
Over the years, we’ve had the privilege of helping over 1,500 clients with their legal needs. When you work with us, you can be confident that you’re getting the best possible legal representation. We’re proud of our track record and our reputation for being a firm that delivers great results.
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