In the state of Virginia, spousal abuse does not exist as its own charge. Instead, courts refer to spousal abuse as domestic violence, an umbrella term that defines a number of different charges that mostly relates to an altercation between two people who are living together or, two people who share a child. It is akin to assault and battery or any altercation, but with the added element of some relationship that is protected under the domestic abuse statute. Even if a person is not technically married to the other person involved in the altercation, it still counts as domestic violence.
Spouse is a limiting term because it does not encompass all of the relationships that exist in a household, if a person is related to somebody by marriage, as in the person is married to them, that is something that would fall under domestic violence. Working with a distinguished domestic violence attorney can enable you to make informed decisions. The interchangeable nature of the terms spousal abuse and domestic abuse means that a Virginia spousal abuse lawyer can defend you in a court of law and help you respond to these accusations.
When a person is accused of this type of violence, the consequences depend on the gravity of the violence and what kind of injuries were sustained. If someone is accused of simple assault and battery against their spouse and that is something that they will probably be arrested for, they will probably be released depending on the number of injuries. It could just be a misdemeanor offense, a misdemeanor assault and battery against a family member or if it is graver than that, then it could even be a felony offense.
Immediately, the person has this protective order issued against them for the first 48 hours that they cannot challenge during that time period. Sometimes, this can be used as a tool to get a quick custody or a quick possession of the house or something in order to get some of these things out if they are trying to leave. Certainly, that can cause problems especially if the person has already been having trouble in their marriage making it something that should be addressed with the assistance of an experienced attorney. These are all things that may negatively affect someone accused of spousal abuse that should inspire them to consult with someone who is more knowledgeable on the topic than they are. By hiring a skillful Virginia spousal abuse lawyer, an individual can receive legal protections and benefits, that they could not access on their own.
If somebody is accused of some type of spousal violence where the person is not clearly injured but potentially it occurred, then they are still going to be arrested. The person will be brought before a magistrate where the charges are going to be brought against them. The police officer is going to explain and that is going to allow the US to go forward.
The accused can expect to be released on bond pending their court date. There is going to be an emergency protective order in place for the first 72 hours for the victim of that charge. That is something that could prevent the accused from entering their house. Virginia protective orders typically grant the alleged victim possession of the house, the car, and probably custody of the children.
The first 72 hours may be the opportunity to renew that and continue it to have a full hearing on the matter in order to get a more permanent protective order in place. Immediately when a person is arrested for a domestic violence-type offense, a protective order is most likely going to be issued just automatically for 48 hours and the person is going to have to stay out of the house that they were living in before. The exceptions for this would be if the person did not live with their spouse. If the individual lived alone, they would not be expected to give up their home for that person.
There are many considerations that a lawyer will be able to take on an individual’s behalf. The attorney can protect the accused from potential damage to their character. Especially when it concerns matters like law enforcement reaching out to neighbors and family members to try to figure out if the person has done this type of thing before. A person’s reputation can be ruined pretty quickly if an officer asks the wrong questions to the wrong people.
Somebody who is accused of spousal abuse should consult a Virginia spousal abuse lawyer because as soon as a person is accused, they will lose their rights pretty quickly. They might become homeless. The individual might find their contact with their children limited. An experienced attorney can help you prepare for all of the change that occurs when one is accused of domestic violence.