Peterford Law, Criminal Defense Attorney for DUI & Felony Charges in Palm Beach County
What Qualifies as Domestic Violence?

Posted on Feb 8th 2024


What Qualifies as Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence is a serious crime in the eyes of the law, carrying severe penalties for those convicted. For those facing allegations of domestic violence, navigating the legal complexities can be daunting. As an expert DV lawyer in Palm Beach County, FL, Peterford Law provides not just legal representation but also clarity on the definition of domestic violence and its implications for your case.

Understanding Domestic Violence

Domestic violence is characterized by a pattern of behaviors where one partner seeks to gain or maintain control over their intimate partner. This form of abuse can manifest in various forms and occur across a spectrum of relationships—whether the partners are married, cohabiting, or simply dating.

Crimes Classified under Domestic Violence

If you've been charged with domestic violence, understanding the scope of behaviors classified as abuse is vital for your defense. Several crimes are considered to fall under the umbrella of domestic violence, including but not limited to:

  • Physical Abuse: The most recognized form of domestic violence involves physical harm or threats thereof. This covers any act that inflicts physical injury on the victim, including more severe cases using weapons.
  • Emotional and Psychological Abuse: This type of abuse encompasses a range of harmful behaviors, such as verbal attacks, continual criticism, threats, intimidation, and the deliberate isolation from loved ones and social circles.
  • Sexual Abuse: Sexual abuse in a domestic setting involves any non-consensual sexual act or behavior, ranging from unwanted touching to rape.
  • Financial Abuse: Financial or economic abuse is a way to control the victim by limiting their access to money, hiding assets, or sabotaging their employment. It can trap the victim in the relationship, making it difficult to leave.
  • At Peterford Law, our experience as a DV lawyer in Palm Beach County, FL will help you win your case.
  • Spousal and Child Endangerment: Spousal endangerment occurs when one partner's actions directly threaten the physical or psychological well-being of the other. Child endangerment involves placing a child in a dangerous situation, whether through direct abuse, neglect, or exposing them to violence between the parents.

Legal Consequences

The penalties for domestic violence charges can be severe and carry life-altering consequences. Convicted individuals may face jail or prison time, substantial fines, mandatory counseling, restraining orders, and even the loss of child custody or visitation rights. The severity of the penalties generally depends on several factors, including the nature of the offense, the defendant's criminal history, and the jurisdiction in which the offense occurred.

In Florida, a state known for its pro-prosecution stance on domestic violence, a conviction for domestic violence can result in a minimum of five days in county jail for first-time offenders, with more severe penalties for repeat offenses or when the violence results in serious bodily injury. This aggressive prosecution of domestic violence cases means that the right DV lawyer in Palm Beach County, FL can make a significant difference in your case’s outcome.

An individual facing a domestic abuse charge working with Peterford Law to win their case.

Protecting Your Rights with Peterford Law

When facing a domestic violence charge, having a skilled and compassionate DV lawyer in Palm Beach County, FL to advocate for you is crucial. Peterford Law offers expert legal representation in cases of domestic violence. With a deep understanding of Florida's legal system and a background as a former prosecutor, Kevin brings a unique perspective and a comprehensive approach to defending your rights. Call today to request a free consultation and learn more about how Peterford Law can help you.