In many cases, domestic violence occurs in the heat of the moment. After an incident leads to the police being called to the scene, you may begin to panic. What will happen if you are convicted? Our attorneys at Hager & Schwartz, P.A. want to share some of the effects of a domestic violence conviction, and how working with our team can give you the best chance of avoiding these consequences.
Depending on the details of the altercation, domestic violence may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony offense.
A misdemeanor offense is punishable by:
- Up to one year in jail
- Up to $1,000 in fines
A felony causes the penalties to increase to:
- Up to 15 years in prison
- Up to $10,000 in fines
A first-degree felony, the most severe, is punishable by life in prison.
Here’s an important note: Individuals convicted of any domestic violence crime, misdemeanor or felony, will most likely have their gun rights revoked.
Losing Your Job
Another main consequence of a domestic violence conviction is losing your job. While the court won’t order your employer to fire you, nor is it a definite consequence, this is a risk you should be aware of. Florida is an at-will employment state, meaning that employers can fire employees for any legal reason, at any time. A domestic violence conviction is enough to warrant legal termination.
Another consequence of domestic violence is strained relationships with other family members and friends. While this could be a consequence of all criminal convictions, the personal nature of domestic violence may lead to more pervasive relationship issues. If you and the alleged victim share children, they may hold the incident against you and create distance between you. This may even affect your custody rights. Others may make the assumption that you are unsafe to be around. In any instance, you may run into issues maintaining strong relationships with people who do not understand your side.
A domestic violence conviction can wreak havoc on your reputation. Domestic violence is a serious offense, and when people are made aware you have a conviction or see it on your criminal record, they may make snap judgments about who you are and your character. Unfortunately, domestic violence convictions are also ineligible for expungement. Once you are convicted, it remains on your record forever.
Top Tier Domestic Battery Defense
You’ll want to do everything in your power to not let your domestic violence arrest turn into a conviction. The first thing you can and should do is contact a domestic violence defense attorney. Our team at Hager & Schwartz, P.A. has fought and won these complex cases for numerous clients. You can have peace of mind knowing that you have aggressive and experienced defense on your side. Give our Fort Lauderdale attorneys a call today at (954) 840-8713.