Anyone who commits an act of violence against a family member or cohabitant can be charged with domestic violence in the state of Georgia. Accusations of family violence are not always true, and fortunately for the accused, hiring a Sandy Springs domestic violence lawyer can help even the playing field.

Courts and law enforcement officials take domestic violence very seriously, and if you are convicted, your entire life can be uprooted in a relatively short period of time. The accusations can also ruin your reputation and standing in the community. If you have been charged with family violence, it might be critical to speak with a skilled criminal attorney to see what you may be facing.

Defining Family Violence

There are many types and forms of family violence, and understanding them can help an accused individual understand the charges they are facing. Depending on the nature of the situation, the following acts of abuse can be considered a form of family violence if it is committed against a family member, romantic partner, or cohabitant of any sort:

  • Assault
  • Sexual violence
  • Harassment
  • Stalking
  • Verbal and psychological abuse
  • Kidnapping

There are other types of family violence as well, but the ones listed above are the most common. A person does not necessarily have to commit an act in order to be charged with domestic violence, and many individuals forget that making a threat can be interpreted as an act of violence in itself. If a person is accused of domestic violence, they may need help from a Sandy Springs domestic violence lawyer.

Potential Legal Penalties

Individuals who are convicted of domestic violence face a wide range of potential legal consequences. Many of these consequences can impact the career and reputation of a person, and if an accused individual wants to avoid them, they will need help from a Sandy Springs domestic violence lawyer. Potential consequences include imprisonment, legal fines, probation, community service, and other forms of restitution.

If a person is in the middle of a custody battle or divorce when they are convicted, the conviction can prevent the person from receiving custody. Convictions can also cause a person to lose their voting privileges, career, and citizenship status. It is also unlikely that the person will be able to return to the household after the trial and conviction.

Common Defenses in Domestic Cases

A Sandy Springs domestic violence lawyer will be responsible for crafting a legal strategy in court. Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to fight back against family violence charges using arguments such as self-defense, false allegations, insufficient evidence, and wrong suspect defense.

If a lawyer can prove the individual committed an act of violence to protect themselves or their children, the charges against them can be dropped.  Not everyone charged with domestic violence is guilty, and if a lawyer can prove the alleged victim falsely accused the defendant of an act of violence, the court may drop the charges and punish the accuser.

Insufficient evidence means that the prosecution does not have enough evidence to prove the defendant committed the act in question. The wrong suspect argument means that the defendant was not present when the alleged victim claims to have been harmed.

Before trial, the attorney will explain their legal strategy to the individual. If you have been charged with an act of family violence, you get in touch with a Sandy Springs domestic violence lawyer. An attorney can provide you with the legal guidance you need, and help you defend your rights in court.