Our Skilled Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys will conduct an immediate, in-depth case review with you which includes an explanation of the elements of the charge(s) and an evaluation of the facts to determine your best defense. Relationships are complicated. No matter how much you love someone, conflicts are inevitable. In Florida, allegations of domestic violence are taken very seriously and almost always result in charges being pressed. Here are some common questions:
Florida law classifies various criminal offenses under the general category of domestic violence, including:.
- Domestic battery and aggravated battery
- Domestic assault and aggravated assault
- Kidnapping and false imprisonment
- Elderly Abuse
- Harassment, stalking and aggravated stalking
- Restraining order and no-contact order violations
- Sexual battery, rape, and other sex offenses
- Any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member
Domestic violence is defined as any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.
“Family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.
Domestic violence is not just recurring violent behavior against a family member, such as a spouse or parent. Even an isolated event of grabbing, pushing or any other type of battery between a couple – married or not – siblings, or a parent and child can be considered domestic violence.
If you are convicted of domestic violence, there are minimum mandatory sentences that are applicable depending on the type of domestic violence conviction. This conviction will be on your record permanently for employers, potential employers, government agencies and others to see. This will affect your ability to gain employment in many types of jobs. This conviction can never be removed from your records.
- No. In a Domestic Violence Defense case in Florida, the offense has to be committed by one family or household member against another. This can mean a spouse or former spouse, a girl or boyfriend, or someone related to you by blood or marriage or if a child is shared between the parties. It does not matter if you have lived with this person in the past, present or ever.
No. This fact is often not revealed when a plea to a domestic violence offense is offered.
That doesn’t mean the charges will be dropped. The Prosecutor does not always have to rely on the testimony of a victim to charge, prosecute and win a domestic violence case. Often the prosecution may have other evidence, such as pictures of injuries, admissible statements, etc. Domestic Violence offenses are taken very seriously by the courts (it’s very political now), they are pursued and can sometimes even be won with or without the testimony of the victim.
Florida Statute 741.2901(2) provides that it is the intent of the Florida Legislature to treat domestic violence “as a criminal act rather than a private matter.”
The Florida legislature has expressed an intention that “criminal prosecution shall be the favored method of enforcing compliance with injunctions for protection against domestic violence as both length and severity of sentence for those found to have committed the crime of domestic violence can be greater, thus providing greater protection to victims and better accountability of perpetrators.”
Don’t talk to anyone, call us. If you decide to speak to law enforcement about the facts of your case without an attorney being present, then you are waiving your Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination and your Sixth Amendment right to counsel. In the event the officer does intend to make an arrest, as your attorneys, we can help you surrender under terms that may speed up your release, keep you safe, and save you money. We can contact the prosecutor to discuss lowering the bond amount.
Felony domestic violence is more serious than misdemeanor domestic violence. Misdemeanors are punishable by small monetary fines and/or jail sentences of up to one-year maximum.
A domestic violence felony charge can result in the following consequences:
- Heavier fines, sometimes several thousand dollars
- Incarceration in a state or federal prison facility, for periods longer than one year
- Mandatory rehabilitation courses
- Probation periods
Also, being found guilty could result in:
- Loss of gun ownership privileges (for offenders who have been issued a domestic violence restraining order)
- Loss of custody rights or visitation privileges
- Inability to secure a job or housing
Finally, most domestic violence criminal charges are considered to be misdemeanors, unless they involve serious injury or violence. However, in Florida, a domestic violence misdemeanor charge will often be counted as a felony due to the previous offenses.
The Batterers’ Intervention Program (BIP) is a twenty-six (26) to twenty-nine (29) week intensive program that addresses the causes of domestic violence and the ways to prevent it in the future. In order to successfully complete the Batterers’ Intervention Program, you must pay for a BIP Assessment, and then undergo the Assessment.
After the assessment, you must then pay for an orientation, and complete the orientation. Next, you have to attend 26 weeks of classes and pay for weekly small group counseling sessions (which are usually 90 minutes each) and complete at home assignments in your spare time. If you miss any of the classes you can be kicked out of the program which will cause you to violate probation and be subject to a “no bond” arrest warrant.
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What Our Clients Have to Say
Testimonials found on this website are actual client reviews of Powers Sellers & Finkelstein, PLC. We appreciate our clients and their willingness to share their experiences. Please keep in mind that the success of any legal matter depends on the unique circumstances of each case: we cannot guarantee particular results for future clients based on successes we have achieved in past legal matters.
My name is Edgar H and Amanda and her associates were amazing from beginning to end. Amanda handled my VOP flawlessly. Communication for me is KEY and words can’t express how much I appreciated Amanda and her team always being available for my questions and concerns through one of the toughest moments in my life.
Thank you endlessly Amanda!
From the moment I first spoke with Amanda, I never considered seeking the help of another attorney. Her knowledge, genuine concern, and calming influence were so valuable to me while navigating a difficult situation. She brokered a favorable resolution to my case and I would recommend her services to anyone in need of expert legal counsel and human support.
Amanda and her team were able to help our client who has been homeliness for 10 years clear his record in Florida and release him for any outstanding warrants. He now can secure a job and housing and move forward with his life.
They were very efficient but most of all had a true concern for their client.
My son was charged with 2 criminal charges second-degree felony’s. We hired Jenna Finkelstein and within a week she had both charges brought down to a third-degree felony and kept us informed every step of the way. She was very personal, very down to earth, very easy to reach and always returned calls right away. He ended up with no jail time and one year probation and was off in six months with good behavior. Jenna was very proactive at our first appointment and gave us five steps to do within the first week to make it sure that we have the best outcome. Jenna went above and beyond the call of her job and really took a personal interest in our case. She gave us peace which was the most important thing at that time of our life. If anybody I know ever gets into criminal trouble.... I would highly advise them to contact Jennna Finkelstein. Thanks for your hard work Jenna.
Dad of a good kid
Amanda Sellers has done magnificent work for my back to back traffic cases. With unusual out-of-state license woes hanging in the balance she preformed well over my expectations. Above and beyond she went for me and opened the ceiling on my otherwise dark a closing tunnel. I cannot thank her enough for helping me clear my path to a calmer, clearer outlook for my future
Amanda and Jenna are wonderful attorneys that have chosen a career of helping those that can't always help themselves. Working closely with Amanda showed her passion and drive to protect the innocent while never stepping down. If you are in need of legal counsel at a great price, these two ladies will not let you down!!
There are many law firms that are all about the money… But what sets Jenna apart as an attorney and distinguishes her from the rest is her compassion and personal approach. She not only empowered us with knowledge before our case even went to court, but also provided us with the silver lining during our darkest time in the form of her emotional support and reassurance. She also made the time to help us even at the most urgent times, and she treated us with fairness and respect, regardless of our personal background. She has both the experience and true passion for helping her clients, and for that, I can’t thank her enough. So if you need an attorney, Ms. Jenna Finkelstein is the one!
This team of skilled litigator work tirelessly for thier clients. The firm has expertise in criminal law matters and personal injury litigation. They obtain exceptional results for thier clients. Known for being fierce advocate for thier clients. Without hesitation I recommend and endorse this firm.