Franklin Domestic Violence Attorney
Sometimes we are abused by the ones we love. Victims will often try to rationalize it, but the truth is that people should not hurt their family members or romantic partners. When they do, this is called domestic violence. In Tennessee, it is called domestic assault. The Franklin domestic violence attorneys at Beal Nations Crutcher can help if you have been the victim of domestic violence or need a protective order.
What is Domestic Assault?
Under Tennessee law, assault is when a person intentionally or knowingly:
- Causes bodily injury to another person
- Causes offensive physical contact with another person
- Causes another to reasonably fear imminent bodily injury
Some examples include:
- Hitting, punching, or kicking the victim
- Spitting on the victim
- Brandishing a deadly or non-deadly weapon on the victim
- Pointing a gun at the victim, even if it is not loaded
Specific Victims of Domestic Assault
Domestic assault is different from other types of assault because of the victims involved. Domestic assault occurs when a person commits assault on:
- A current or former spouse
- Dating or sexual partner
- Blood or adopted relative
- Current or former relative by marriage
- Child (minor or adult) of any of the above
A person convicted of domestic assault can be charged with a misdemeanor. A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by up to 11 months and 29 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. A Class B misdemeanor is not as serious and is punishable by six months in jail as well as a $500 fine.
Subsequent charges are punished more harshly. A second conviction may be punishable by a fine of up to $3,500, as well as up to 11 months and 29 days in jail. A person convicted of a third or subsequent conviction may be ordered to pay a fine of up to $5,000 and spend as long as 11 months and 29 days in jail.
In Tennessee, a victim can protect themselves from their abuser by getting an order of protection. There are two types of orders available: Temporary Protection Orders (TPO) and Extended Protection Orders (EPO).
A TPO should be the first step. These are emergency orders that are typically granted without the abuser being given notice. They last just 15 days.
A TPO can:
- Stop the abusive conduct.
- Stop all communication between the abuser and victim.
- Order the abuser to stay away from the victim.
- Order the abuser to leave the shared home immediately.
An EPO can be granted after a court hearing. They last up to one year and can do the following:
- Give the victim possession of a shared home or require the abuser to provide the victim with suitable housing.
- Award financial support to the victim.
- Establish temporary custody rights of minor children.
- Require the abuser to attend counseling.
Contact Us Today
Domestic assault is illegal in Tennessee. If you are a victim, make sure you contact the authorities.
You should also protect yourself with an order of protection. The law firm of Beal, Nations & Crutcher can help. Get started with a consultation by calling (615) 861-2304.