Sometimes, arguments and disagreements in a relationship can escalate into a physical altercation, putting you in a tough spot with the law. If you’ve been accused of domestic violence, you’ll need legal assistance. Leppard Law: Florida DUI Lawyers & Criminal Defense Attorneys PLLC offers the kind of legal assistance you’ll need in such situations. With years of experience in handling such matters, you can count on their professionalism to get you through such a difficult time.

What is Domestic Violence?

This is the crime of abuse, physical or otherwise, of somebody with whom you share a residence. Whether it’s a spouse, a boyfriend, or a relative, it involves all forms of abuse that can range from assault to coercion. Whenever an argument gets hostile in a relationship, physical violence and emotional abuse can occur. These are all forms of domestic abuse, of which domestic battery is the most common. Needless to say, the perpetrator of such a crime, once convicted, will have to deal with the consequences for a long time, sometimes for life. Even when the perpetrator escapes conviction, the fact of having such a record can cause them to miss out on many opportunities in life. For instance, running for public office becomes a challenge if someone is known to have had domestic violence charges leveled against them.

Expungement of a Domestic Violence Record

Getting a domestic violence charge erased from your record has all sorts of benefits. However, this is easier said than done. Different jurisdictions have different procedures and considerations in place. Of course, the nature of the crime, whether or not an individual sought professional help for their temperament, and other forms of restitution a perpetrator made will all determine the likelihood of expungement.

Most arrests due to domestic violence are simply a case of one person’s word against the other. Arresting officers on the scene may not have a way of corroborating each party’s account of what happened. However, to prevent further altercations and a possible reprimand from their superiors, they usually arrest the accused just to get them out of the house.

The issue with having a domestic violence record is that it can be accessed by employers. This becomes a problem for the alleged perpetrator. Even if they beat such a charge, the mere fact that it is still on their record may make many potential employers reluctant to offer them work.

In some states, it can take as little as six months for a record of domestic violence to be expunged from a person’s record. Others take up to a year or two. Several factors will determine this expungement. These include;

i)Testimony from the alleged victim about the perpetrator’s rehabilitation

ii) The nature of the alleged assault that led to the domestic violence charge

iii) A perpetrator’s past criminal history

Some states don’t have a system to expunge a person’s domestic violence charge. It stays for life. Of course, you’ll need legal advice to ascertain this. That’s why it’s always prudent to seek help from certified lawyers in that particular jurisdiction. They will have a full understanding of domestic violence laws and all their nuances.

Why Get an Expungement?

The potential to miss out on many opportunities is the primary motivation for getting your domestic violence record expunged. In addition to being discriminated against during employment screening, housing can also become an issue. Many landlords are concerned about having a tenant with a record of violent crimes. In addition to these consequences, there is a cloud of judgment that follows such perpetrators around. Many of their friends and acquaintances may choose to distance themselves from such an individual.

Getting a domestic violence record expunged is not only for employment and housing purposes but also for peace of mind. If a perpetrator has paid his debt to society, he may feel it’s unfair to have such a record haunting them for the rest of their life. For those falsely accused of domestic violence, getting such a record expunged brings them closure.

Chances of a Domestic Violence Charge Expungement

Getting the expungement process started begins with filing a petition. Your lawyer will know how to file all the necessary paperwork and any other requirements. As mentioned, many domestic violence allegations are the result of arguments that get out of hand. With tempers running high, threats and physical altercations result. Many judges are usually open to listening to an alleged perpetrator’s side of the story. While some serious cases result in denial of expungement, many people get this charge erased from their records.

All in all, the nature of the domestic violence charge and where you live will determine your chances of expungement.

By Manali