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Clarkston Domestic Violence Lawyer

Michigan law enforcement authorities take domestic violence crimes seriously. Those convicted can face harsh penalties. The criminal charges and penalties resulting from domestic violence incidents vary according to the circumstances, but individuals can face probation, jail time, and high fines.

If you are dealing with such charges, a Clarkston domestic violence lawyer can help defend you. A skilled criminal defense lawyer can investigate the situation that led to the charges and work toward a more favorable resolution to the charges against you.

Understanding Domestic Violence Laws

Michigan legislature addresses domestic violence offenses within the context of its general assault and battery statute. An assault or battery becomes a domestic violence offense when the individuals involved have a family or other close relationship defined in Michigan Compiled Laws § 750.81(2). These relationships include:

  • Current or former spouses
  • Current or former dating partners
  • Individuals who currently or formerly lived in the same household
  • Individuals who share a child

This law further defines a dating relationship as a frequent and intimate relationship that goes beyond a casual relationship or social acquaintance. When an assault or battery occurs involving individuals in one of these relationships, it constitutes a domestic violence offense. Contacting a diligent domestic violence lawyer in Clarkston when facing these charges can help strengthen your case.

Penalties for Domestic Violence Convictions

Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.81(2) establishes a first-time assault or battery offense as a misdemeanor, regardless as to whether it is a domestic violence offense. The penalties for a first conviction may include a maximum sentence of incarceration of 93 days and a $500 fine. If individuals have a previous assault or battery conviction or target of the alleged assault or battery is known to be pregnant, these penalties increase to a maximum one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

The potential penalties for an assault or battery conviction drastically increase if individuals have two or more prior assault and battery convictions that involve domestic violence or someone known to be pregnant. In such a case, incarceration may increase to as much as five years and the fine to as much as $5,000. Given the potential severity of these penalties, a seasoned domestic violence attorney in Clarkston may be useful in fighting domestic violence charges.

Penalties of a Conviction

Under Michigan law, an assault and battery that results in severe or aggravated injuries to others can result in up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. A subsequent conviction for a crime that also resulted in severe or aggravated injuries becomes a felony offense with a maximum sentence of incarceration of four years

Similarly, Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.82 makes it a felony offense for individuals to commit an assault and battery against another person with a gun, knife, club, or another dangerous weapon. A conviction for this offense can result in penalties of up to four years in prison and a $2,000 fine.

Consult a Clarkston Domestic Violence Attorney for Advice

In addition to incarceration and fines, individuals who allegedly commit domestic violence assault/battery can face probation, required completion of counseling or substance abuse treatment, and more. They also may be subject to orders that prohibit them from any contact with the family or household members who were targeted by the alleged offense. To avoid or reduce the likelihood of suffering harsh repercussions in a domestic violence conviction, you may wish to contact a Clarkston domestic violence lawyer for legal representation.

You may be eligible for a domestic violence deferral program if you have no prior convictions. By completing some requirements, you might be able to avoid a criminal conviction for the offense altogether. Call today to discuss your legal options.