Domestic violence, also referred to as domestic abuse, comes in many forms and may leave those accused facing criminal charges. Depending on how serious the incident was and other factors, you may be charged with a misdemeanor or felony offense. Misdemeanor charges are generally less serious than felony charges and result in penalties/punishment that is less harsh than with a felony conviction.
It is a crime under California’s domestic violence laws to harm, or threaten to harm a spouse, fellow parent, cohabitant, intimate partner, or even someone you are dating/have dated. Unfortunately, many people who are completely innocent are accused of domestic abuse every day. Even worse, if you are found guilty or “convicted” of domestic violence it can impact your reputation, family relationships, even your freedom. A criminal record is something you don’t want hanging over your head.
If you are convicted on domestic violence charges, other consequences may include payment of restitution to the victim, fines, loss of child custody rights, mandatory participation in domestic violence classes, jail time, and immigration consequences if you are not a citizen of the U.S.