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In the state of Alabama, domestic violence is when physical conduct occurs between individuals who are involved in a relationship, whether filial or romantic. An experienced criminal attorney can help those facing other family violence offenses such as attempts at violence, sexual abuse, and unlawful imprisonment.

Family violence charges often require significant examination of the facts that led up to the event, the type of relationship involved, and any prior conduct by the parties. The consequences of a domestic violence conviction can be substantial and follow a person for the rest of their life. If you or a loved one faces a family violence charge, it is imperative to retain the assistance of a Tuscaloosa domestic violence lawyer.

Relationships Involved in Family Violence

For a charge of domestic abuse to be issued, the aggressive conduct must have occurred between the person accusing the crime and the accused. Some of these relationships include:

  • Current or former dating partners
  • Individuals who are engaged to be married or formerly engaged
  • Current or former spouses
  • Parents and children
  • Parents or divorced co-parents of children
  • Current or former household members

What are the Degrees of  Violence?

The state legislature has divided domestic violence crimes into several different categories, based on the seriousness of the charge and the potential resulting penalties. First-degree domestic violence involves either acts of first-degree assault or aggravated stalking. Second-degree domestic violence involves non-aggravated stalking, witness intimidation, second or third-degree burglary or first-degree criminal mischief.

Third-degree domestic violence involves acts of menacing, third-degree assault, criminal coercion, harassment, reckless endangerment, third-degree criminal trespassing, third-degree arson, or second or third-degree criminal mischief. A Tuscaloosa domestic violence lawyer can help determine the severity of the degree to which an individual was charged.

Penalties for Domestic Violence

The penalties for family violence crimes can vary significantly. The potential penalties for domestic abuse charges in Alabama can be substantial depending on the defendant’s prior record and whether the offense in question is considered a Class A felony, a Class B felony, or a Class A misdemeanor.

  • First-degree family violence can carry up to a lifetime sentence in prison, while individuals with prior convictions are forced to serve one year before becoming eligible for early release
  • Second-degree crimes are Class B felonies that can result in 20 years of incarceration
  • Third-degree convictions result in an individual facing up to one year in jail

Contacting a Tuscaloosa Domestic Violence Attorney

An experienced attorney can often prove insightful by working to decrease the charges that a person faces. In addition to criminal penalties, individuals may also be issued protection from abuse orders. These orders are a form of temporary restraining order obtained by the allegedly abused without obtaining permissions from a partner or spouse.

After an initial issuance, a hearing must be had on the order within 10 days, and the accused party will have the opportunity to present evidence in opposition to the restraining order. In the event of a dangerous situation, individuals are often eager to pursue a restraining order.

A Tuscaloosa domestic violence lawyer can help create strong strategies to respond to family violence charges. The substantial impact of a conviction on your life makes it important to obtain the assistance of a skilled attorney.