Being charged with domestic violence assault in Texas can be a scary experience. You could be facing jail time, as well as longer-lasting impacts on your life and family. At Jason English Law, we look much further than the immediate impact of criminal charges. Our experienced legal team helps our clients consider the long-term effects of domestic violence assault charges and how they may impact a future. This way, we can advise you of the potential consequences of making different decisions in your case. If you are facing charges of this nature, consider contacting the dedicated criminal defense attorneys at Jason English Law by calling (512) 454-7548.
If you are convicted of domestic violence assault, you may face the following penalties as described in Texas Penal Code Title 5, Chapter 22:
· Jail time ranging from up to one year in jail for an assault considered a lesser offense to 99 years in jail for a serious offense
· Monetary fines up to $10,000
· Probation or community supervision
· Community service
· Anger management
One of the potential longer-term effects of domestic violence assault charges is the possibility of a criminal charge on a permanent record that will follow the person for the rest of their life. These types of domestic violence assault charges can be classified as misdemeanors or felonies in Texas, depending on the circumstances. Additionally, if you are convicted of a domestic violence crime, any future charges may be enhanced and subject you to stiffer penalties.
If a person is accused of committing an act of family violence, the victim may be able to seek a protective order. Texas Family Code § 71.004 defines “family violence” as the act of one family or household member against another family or household member that is intended to result in physical harm or a threat of physical harm.
If a protective order is granted, there can be several consequences you may face including:
· The inability to have any contact with the alleged victim and your children with them, if any
· The inability to go to places where the alleged victim frequents
· Losing custodial rights
· Losing visitation rights
· Having to pay child support until a more permanent order can be put in place
Family Law Consequences
A conviction for domestic violence assault can adversely affect you rights in family law cases, including divorce, child custody, or visitation cases. Additionally, you could be prohibited from fostering or adopting a child.
A domestic violence charge can result in you being denied housing. Landlords generally have the right to run background checks on you and can deny housing if they believe you could be a threat to the safety of others. If there was a sexual component to the assault charge, you could also be denied housing near certain areas, such as schools or daycare centers. If the alleged victim secured a protective order, you can be forced out of your home.
Domestic violence charges can also result in the loss of your job. Texas is an at-will employment state. Therefore, your employer can terminate you for any reason whatsoever unless it is illegal. Additionally, a criminal record can result in an employer not making or rescinding a job offer.
A domestic violence conviction can make you ineligible for certain types of jobs. They can also cause you to lose an occupational license you need to work in your current line of work. Because you can lose your right to carry a weapon, you may be unable to work in certain occupations, such as a security guard, law enforcement officer, or a job that requires you to have a security clearance. Finally, your criminal record may preclude you from attending school or an education program required for employment that you seek in the future.
Loss of Civil Rights and Licenses
A domestic violence charge can result in having to surrender your guns until your case is resolved. If you are found guilty of the domestic violence charge, you may be unable to carry a firearm for several years. If you are convicted of a felony, you can lose your right to vote or run for public office. Additionally, you can also lose your hunting or fishing license.
A domestic violence assault can be considered a crime of moral turpitude, which could subject a defendant to removal from the country if they are not a United States citizen.
Accusations of domestic violence can negatively impact your reputation. Many people may not wait for the official criminal case to conclude or give you the benefit of the doubt. This can result in a public shunning by coworkers, colleagues, friends, neighbors, family members and others. If you own your own business, your livelihood may also be impacted by clients or customers refusing to do business with you, even if the underlying accusations are false.
Why Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer?
As indicated above, there are many long-term effects of domestic violence charges in Texas. To combat the possibility of a conviction, you may wish to visit with an experienced criminal defense lawyer who can possibly help you with the following:
· Explain your legal rights to you
· Advise you of your options
· Attempt to mitigate the long-term consequences of domestic violence assault charges via diversion, a plea bargain, or acquittal
· Investigate if the alleged victim had a motive to make false accusations or there are other potential defenses to the charges you are facing
· Fight to protect your rights
· Respond with an aggressive defense to protect your reputation and rights
The criminal justice system typically focuses on protecting the rights of the alleged victim. Jason English Law focuses on protecting the rights of those confronting criminal charges.
Contact the Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys at Jason English Law for More Information
Dealing with the possible long-term effects of a domestic violence assault charge can be overwhelming. In addition to facing possible jail time and other criminal penalties, you are also facing a negative stigma and other consequences that can affect you for the rest of your life. A domestic violence defense lawyer can possibly help take action to protect your legal rights. If you would like to mount a defense to the charges you are facing, consider contacting Jason English Law by calling (512) 454-7548