Both the accused and the accuser can benefit from seeking legal advice in a case involving accusations of domestic violence.
The law treats domestic violence differently in some ways than it treats other accusations of crimes. While most criminal law is based on the idea of meting out punishment and restoring justice after a crime has been committed, the policy behind domestic violence laws is largely built around preventing future harms. With this in mind, the process of obtaining a domestic violence protection order is much more streamlined than a typical criminal trial, with an emphasis on protecting accusers from harm. However, the accused person still has a right to due process.
Defendants in a domestic violence case have the right to a hearing, and should be informed of the timing and conduct of the hearing..
Representation for victims
It is also important for victims to seek legal advice in domestic violence cases to ensure their protection. A domestic violence hearing does not operate under the same strict evidentiary rules as a trial, but it is a legal process and requires careful planning and skilled representation. A good lawyer can represent victims in a way that fights for their rights while also guarding their emotional wellbeing.
If, at the hearing, the court finds evidence of abuse and a credible threat to the plaintiff’s safety, the court may issue a domestic violence protective order. The order would be in effect for one year. Among other things, the order prevents contact between the accuser and the accused and prevents the defendant from having access to the possession of firearms. The court also may issue mutual restraining orders. The consequences of the hearings can have great effects on the lives of individuals involved.
Whether it comes in the context of a divorcing married couple or some other relationship, an accusation of domestic violence is serious. Both parties can benefit from skilled legal help.