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The Domestic Violence Laws of California

We have spoken in the past of the different types of restraining orders those residing in California can rely on to ensure they are protected from offenders. However, it’s also worth focusing on situations that occur when your personal safety is violated, specifically domestic violence laws.

Obviously, domestic violence is never acceptable in any context, and you should always consult with your local police and eventually an attorney who specializes in these types of cases when charges are brought forward. But for now, we’re going to take a step back and go over some of the things you should know about these matters in California so you understand your rights.

The Definition of Domestic Violence in California

So let’s get to the basics first – what constitutes domestic violence in our fair state? The parameters are far greater than simply when a person lays their hands on another. This can also consist of threatening, stalking, abandoning, and damaging the property of the victim.

As you can see, there is a level of distinguishing that California law recognizes when it comes to domestic violence. These circumstances apply to an individual who is or who once was involved intimately with the accused perpetrator, and can result in either a misdemeanor or a felony based on the seriousness of the charges.

Who Is Really At Fault

This is where things can get a little tricky, to say the least. There are situations where both parties involved are each a victim of domestic violence. Say, for example, one person was acting in self-defense, was set up to take the fall, or were themselves the prey of ongoing domestic abuse and finally said enough was enough and retaliated. It just goes to show that the response system for domestic violence is imperfect, and those who have suffered the most may either go unheard or get arrested through a misconstrued position.

How to Prove Domestic Violence Took Place

In order for the accused to be convicted of causing corporal injury on their partner, much like in other criminal cases, there has to be proof beyond a reasonable doubt in each element of the case. In California, the attorney must prove that the defendant is guilty of willfully or intentionally inflicting domestic violence which ends up causing a traumatic condition on the intimate party.

Whether the person who struck their partner intended to or not, if the physical act is the substantial cause behind the traumatic condition they’re suffering from, then this proves a natural and probable consequence of their actions.

How to Defend Yourself Against Domestic Violence Charges

Let’s say you find yourself on the other side of the courtroom having been accused of domestic violence yourself. What are you able to do in this situation? Fortunately, there are several defenses available to you.

This includes lack of willful intent, false accusations or fabricated allegations, a setting requiring self-defense involving a reasonable belief for the need to protect yourself, and lack of proof that the act of domestic violence even took place to start with. Any of these matters can be used by the attorney to either have the court dismiss the charges or reduce the charges to a lesser crime such as simple assault or misdemeanor battery. A plea agreement may also be arranged.

What Happens During the Sentencing

In California, the District Attorney has the discretion of whether to charge the guilty party with either a misdemeanor or a felony. This means if the charges brought forward originally constituted felony domestic violence, there is a possibility the felony can be reduced to a misdemeanor either by the court or the attorney.

The sentence typically involves a substantial fine, summary or formal probation, a year or longer in jail, and a restraining order. Those with prior convictions, these charges can increase substantially. Cases involving child endangerment or elder abuse can tack on additional indictments.

As you can probably see, domestic violence cases often require a multi-faceted approach in responding to these circumstances from someone who is able to adapt as new information is presented. After all, as we mentioned, this may be a situation where the defendant is actually a victim themselves.

This is where the relationship between the attorney, the client, and the prosecutor can play such a huge role in determining the true facts of the situation. Learn more about your rights and why you should trust an experienced domestic violence attorney by visiting our website today.

The Benefits of Legal Mediation

Mediation is a great route. If you’re stuck between a legal rock and a hard place, a lawsuit may not be the way to go. Instead, we feel that you should opt for mediation services. Not only is this alternative a more cost-effective one, but you may find that it yields better results. Below, we will share the top 3 advantages of choosing legal mediation for your next negotiation.

Expeditious

When we look at the lengthiness of the legal process, it is clear that mediation is the faster option. Due to the fact that lawsuits tend to take months to years and mediation takes days to weeks, you can rest assured knowing that you’ll be back to your normal routine in no time. The mediation process is designed to be as painless as possible so that both parties can come to a happy medium.

Informal

Unlike a courtroom set up, the mediation process is less formal.  Its lack of strict rules and procedures allows for each party involved to feel more at ease and open. During this time, the mediator is The process is less formal than courtroom procedures. better able to focus on the needs of the parties rather than their stated positions and objections. This fosters greater communication and in turn, leads to a better outcome in many cases.

Preserves Relationships

Mediation can save relationships. Because mediation isn’t built on a win or lose foundation, relationships can often remain intact after all is said and done. During the course of the process, the mediator aims to do what’s in the best interest of each party in order to arrive at a mutual decision. If a process like this were to head to the courtroom, the case may take years, tensions may rise, and friends and families could be torn apart. Mediation is a friendlier alternative to situations such as this.

Conclusion

If you’re looking to bypass months to years in the courtroom, legal mediation is a great option for you. This will guarantee that the parties involved are heard and those valuable relationships remain unsullied. No one is looking to tear each other to shreds. In fact, it’s the mediator’s job to help the parties arrive at a conclusion that is suitable for all.

The Benefits of Hiring a Divorce Lawyer

Filing for a divorce is never what you expect when you take that walk down the aisle into forever with the “love of your life.” Unfortunately, it happens more often than not. If you find yourself in the midst of this unexpected situation, it’s best to hire a trained and experienced professional. In your time of need, a divorce lawyer will have your best interest in mind. Below are just a few more examples of why it’s best to hire a divorce lawyer to handle your case.

Education

A divorce lawyer has education that you lack. Even in the friendliest of divorce cases, things may take a turn for the worst. It’s not wise to try and take care of things on your own. A qualified and educated lawyer will help you understand the ins and outs of the legal system. They will see to it that you get what is owed to you and ensure that the divorce is handled legally and as quickly as possible.

Objectivity

It is a well-known fact that divorces can become heated; tears may flow and voices may be raised. As a result, your attorney will keep a calm and objective head when advising you of the proper procedures and best options made available for you. They will also advise you as to whether or not they feel your demands are actually reasonable.

Problem Solvers

If your case should go to court, your lawyer will examine all the facts and inform you of your best possible options. They’ll also assist you in the process of creating a legal and acceptable settlement A great lawyer will represent you properly in court. proposal so you can finally cast your worries aside. Failing to obtain a trusted attorney could result in more stress and delays in the long run. The right professional will also counsel you on whether or not you should settle with your soon to be ex-spouse or make a counteroffer.

Paperwork

Lawyers can make sense of overwhelming paper work. During your divorce process, there will be mountains of paperwork coming your way. The average Joe may feel overwhelmed with all of these forms and fine print. It’s a legal expert’s job to help you make sense of it all so you can feel great about the journey ahead. They’ll go through all the hard stuff and let you know where to sign. In addition, if the forms need any amending, they’ll take care of it so you can rest easy.

Conclusion

No one plans on getting divorced. But, if it happens to you, it’s best to be prepared. Give yourself a fighting chance by hiring a top-notch divorce attorney. Not only will they keep it as quick and painless as possible, but you can have peace of mind knowing that they’ll do all they can to get you the results you deserve!

Why You Need a Domestic Violence Attorney

A domestic violence conviction is serious business. Your child custody, gun privileges, and ability to work in the field of childcare will be placed at risk. Issues such as these are tough, especially in the absence of tangible proof. In a great number of cases, the accused party is considered “guilty until proven innocent.”

However, representation from a reputable and experienced domestic violence attorney is the key to achieving potential success. An attorney will investigate the details of your case and lead you down the right path to your desired outcome.

Defense Strategies

Your attorney will weigh your options. If you or someone you know is accused of a criminal act, it is the task of your legal professional to analyze your options. If the accuser is able to show evidence of abuse, your team would need to determine if the incident was an attempt at self-defense or “de minimus infractions” (too minuscule to be considered a criminal act). Once the defense team settles on your chosen defense, they can begin to put a plan into action.

Working towards Change

One thing that a skilled and qualified attorney can provide is a game plan. They will guide you towards programs such as conflict resolution, anger management, and theLifestyle changes are pleasing to the court. like. Programs such as these usually please the court and show a willingness for the accused party to change. As a result, the court may show mercy and allow for a less severe penalty.

Discovery

Your attorney will gather necessary evidence and documentation.A legal professional would also conduct a thorough discovery. This process includes but is not limited to a gathering of any medical records or other evidentiary support from the involved parties. Along with the collection of pertinent evidence, the legal counsel should also ask for a list of witnesses for the plaintiff and any possible photographs or video submissions.

Conclusion

Being accused of domestic violence does not have to spell disaster. With the right team in place, you may have a fighting chance. Though it is ideal not to have to face a situation such as this, it’s wise to obtain legal counsel if you find yourself in this position.

A licensed and knowledgeable attorney has the education and experience that you’ll need in order to reach a favorable outcome. In the face of a difficult and potentially damaging legal charge, don’t try and go it alone. Instead, call a legal team that will work hard for you. You’ll be glad you did!

How Prenuptial Agreements Affect Children

For those who have been following our blog, you would know we have covered the pros and cons of prenuptial agreements in a previous post. Now that we have gotten that important aspect out of the way, let’s get closer to the matter and discuss more on what actually is affected by this.

To reiterate, a prenuptial agreement is a contract signed between two persons who are in the process of getting married but haven’t just yet. This is used to determine how any property, income, and other assets will be divided if the marriage dissolves for any reason.

Aside from that, it is also used to contemplate what will happen with the children. For more on this particular topic, here are some situations where this must be considered.

You Plan On Having Children

Even when you’re experiencing your first marriage, a prenuptial agreement can really help you. As we previously mentioned, this contract is designed to protect the property and assets of each spouse if a marriage fails. Beyond that, if you plan on having children, you can include in the contract clauses that cover child support, education, medical insurance, and other crucial matters.

You Already Have Children from a Prior Relationship

For those who are going through a second marriage and happen to have children from a prior relationship, a prenuptial agreement will make sure your children will inherit all or a portion of your assets.

In many states, there is actually a law that prevents someone from ignoring their spouse in a will. This means your spouse may be entitled to the assets that were primarily meant for your children. However, with a prenuptial agreement, you can avoid this matter entirely.

Your Former Spouse is Getting Married to Someone Else

This can be a bit of an uncomfortable situation, but not an uncommon one to thi nk about. If you had a child through a previous marriage but are now divorced, and find out your ex-spouse is remarrying, you should consider the best interests of the child.

At the same time, you cannot use a prenuptial agreement to change the terms surrounding child support, custody, or visitation rights. For that, you must go through the same court where these terms were originally handled.

Conclusion

When you ready to draft a prenuptial agreement, you’ll find this can be immensely difficult, especially when you’re weighing a lot of different variables. This is why you should put your trust in an experienced family lawyer who can help you through the entire process and determine what provisions to include. You will also have peace of mind knowing your rights and personal interests are protected!

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