False or exaggerated claims of domestic violence are common. Emotions can run high when an argument gets out of hand. It is possible that one of the people present is inebriated or impaired by drugs. It's possible that the allegations will be used as leverage in a custody or divorce case. It's safe to say that the charges are severe in any scenario.

When a person is accused of domestic violence in Florida, the situation is taken very seriously. If arrested for domestic violence in Florida, you will not receive a bond until appearing before a first appearance judge.  This means you will spend at least one day in jail.  If found convicted, you will lose access to your right to bear arms forever. The court's decision to "withhold adjudication" does not mean that an arrest record can be sealed in cases like domestic battery misdemeanor charges.

Domestic Violence Lawyer in West Palm Beach, Florida

Allegations of domestic violence are incredibly serious and can be life-altering for all parties involved. The penalties for the charges include possible jail time, probation with mandatory counseling and community service, and monetary fines. Domestic violence has long-lasting societal consequences as well. It's possible that you could lose your job, your kids, and even have trouble finding a place to live. Hire a West Palm Beach criminal defense attorney with experience to protect your rights and your loved ones.

It's possible that the alleged victim will ask the court for a protective order, also known as a restraining order. The petition should be thrown out of court if the allegations are false or exaggerated, so it's important to fight the allegation in court. Any order of protection entered against you will be visible on even the most basic background check. Some companies are more concerned about restraining orders than they are about past convictions.

Ian Goldstein is sensitive to the gravity of the situation and will do his best to defend you against domestic violence charges. Both your reputation and your liberty are on the line. You can count on having support as you deal with these allegations. If you've been accused of domestic violence, hiring a seasoned attorney to represent your case is a must.

Ian Goldstein serves clients in and around Palm Beach County, Florida. This includes South Florida areas like West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, and the surrounding areas. If you need help defending yourself against a domestic violence charge, call criminal defense attorney Ian Goldstein at (561) 600-0950.

Domestic Violence: The Law in Florida

According to Section 741.28 of the Florida Statutes, domestic violence is defined as any assault, battery, aggravated assault or battery, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or other criminal offense committed by a household or family member that results in injury or death to another household or family member.

A household member is defined broadly under this Florida statute, and can include a spouse, ex-spouse, relative by blood or marriage, parents of the same child, or anyone who currently or formerly shared the same residence with another person.

Under Florida law, the alleged victim and the accused must be current or former roommates in the same dwelling unit in order for either to be considered a family or household member. While sharing a home with the other parent is ideal, it is not required for those who share a child.

Since domestic violence charges can encompass a wide variety of wrongdoings, they are not always easy to navigate. It's common for cases of domestic violence to involve the use of many words whose meanings are unfamiliar.

Offenses that fall under the category of domestic violence include, but are not limited to:

  • Harassment
  • Stalking
  • Cyberstalking
  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Violation of an Injunction

Domestic Violence Charges in Florida

Several different types of crimes can be considered acts of domestic violence. Some of them are general and could affect anyone in the house, while others are more narrowly focused, like child abuse. The following are examples of some of the most frequent charges of domestic violence:

  • Assault
  • Aggravated Assault
  • Battery
  • Domestic Battery by Strangulation
  • Aggravated Battery
  • Cyberstalking
  • Stalking
  • Harassment
  • Felony Battery

Domestic Violence and Protective Court Orders

Court protection may be sought by victims of domestic violence or those who have probable cause to believe they will soon become victims. A petition seeking a court order against the abuser could be filed by the victim or prospective victim.

Temporary injunctions are available from the court and can provide victims with quick and easy legal protection. A hearing will be scheduled as soon as possible after such a request has been filed with the court. A judge may issue an order against the alleged abuser if he or she finds that there is an imminent threat of domestic violence. Having the alleged abuser present at the hearing is not necessary for this to proceed.

If the order is broken, criminal charges may be brought against the offender. Willful violations of an injunction against domestic violence are defined as crimes under Florida law (Section 741.31(4)). (a). Not leaving the shared residence when asked to do so, visiting the petitioner at their place of employment, school, or residence, or committing an act of domestic violence against the petitioner are all examples of conduct that would constitute an offense of this nature. Often, even a text message or third party contact will trigger a violation.

To comply with the terms of a domestic violence injunction, the alleged abuser would be prohibited from contacting the petitioner, approaching the petitioner's vehicle within a specified distance, and damaging the petitioner's property. The first degree misdemeanor penalties apply to any such infraction.

If your family is going through a protective order hearing, Ian Goldstein can help. During these proceedings, the court examines the circumstances surrounding the protective order to determine whether or not it was appropriate.

What kind of Penalties does a Domestic Violence Charge Carry in Florida?

Penalties for domestic violence depend on many factors, including the nature of the offense, the alleged offender's criminal history, the victim's age, and whether or not a weapon was used. Penalties may include both misdemeanors and felonies.

  • The maximum penalty for a second degree misdemeanor is 60 days in jail and/or a $500 fine.
  • Punishment for a first-degree misdemeanor may include a year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine.
  • Penalties for a third-degree felony can include up to five years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine.
  • The maximum penalty for a second degree felony is 15 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.

West Palm Domestic Violence Defense Attorney Near Me

If you have been arrested for domestic violence in Palm Beach County, criminal defense attorney Ian Goldstein is available to discuss your case. The best way to find out if you have a good defense against the charges against you is to speak with a criminal defense attorney in West Palm Beach who is familiar with Florida law.

Your case will be aggressively defended by Ian Goldstein, and we may even be able to have the charges against you dropped or reduced. Reach out to us at (561) 600-0950 to set up a complimentary, no obligation meeting.

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If you or a loved one have been arrested and charged with Driving Under the Influence, call (561) 600-0950 to contact the Law Offices of Ian Goldstein today to speak with an experienced Palm Beach County Drug Defense Lawyer.