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Family Law: Domestic Violence

New Jersey Domestic Violence Lawyer

Few New Jersey criminal charges can upend your life faster and more impactfully than domestic violence. In fact, your world can be thrown into turmoil instantly, well before you have actually been charged with a crime. The mere allegation that you have committed an act of domestic abuse – whether true or not – is enough under New Jersey law to have you removed from your home and separated from your kids, among other severe consequences. If you do not take a charge of domestic violence as seriously as New Jersey police and prosecutors do and retain an experienced New Jersey domestic violence attorney as soon as possible, you could be risking everything.

At Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, our New Jersey domestic violence lawyer understands what is at stake. And while our team also understands that actual cases of domestic violence should be treated as the serious crimes they are, the sad reality is that false allegations are too often made or exaggerated for cynical reasons, such as gaining an advantage in a divorce case or custody dispute.

Whatever the underlying circumstances, our attorneys stand ready to protect your rights from the moment you reach out to us. Domestic violence cases in New Jersey proceed much faster than other criminal matters, and it can be easy to get steamrolled by aggressive prosecutors and a legal framework specifically designed to impose swift and dramatic consequences. We use our extensive experience and a tenacious approach to criminal defense in our relentless efforts to clear your name, defeat the charges and get your life back.

What Is Domestic Violence in New Jersey?

Domestic violence in New Jersey is not just one offense; it can be any number of criminal offenses as set forth in the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act of 1991 (PDVA). What makes an offense an act of domestic violence is that it is committed against a “protected person” with whom the accused has or had a relationship, such as a spouse, former spouse, present or former household member, co-parent, boyfriend, girlfriend, ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend.

Domestic violence charges against a protected person can be based on any of the following criminal acts:

  • Homicide
  • Assault
  • Terroristic threats
  • Kidnapping
  • Criminal restraint
  • False imprisonment
  • Sexual assault
  • Criminal sexual contact
  • Lewdness
  • Criminal mischief
  • Burglary
  • Criminal trespass
  • Harassment
  • Stalking
  • Criminal coercion
  • Robbery
  • Contempt of a domestic violence order
  • Any crime involving risk of death or serious bodily injury
  • Cyber harassment

Without a New Jersey Domestic Violence Lawyer on Your Side, You Could Immediately Lose Your Rights

The PDVA establishes unique and expedited procedures for police, prosecutors and courts responding to allegations of domestic violence. This includes the entry of a restraining order against the accused initially and usually without providing the accused of notice or an opportunity to respond. If a judge grants such an order based on credible allegations by the alleged victim, it will typically prohibit the accused from having any contact with the alleged victim, directly or indirectly, among other possible limitations on the accused’s rights.

Ultimately, the accused will have an opportunity to respond and fight the extension of any temporary restraining order issued against him or her. This means that the temporary restraining order can be dismissed, but it also means that a final restraining order can be entered, one that is permanent unless later dissolved by a judge. Final restraining orders can be overwhelming and harsh, and include consequences such as:

  • Restraining the defendant from engaging in further acts of domestic violence
  • Granting the accuser exclusive possession of the residence or household
  • Limiting or placing other restrictions on the accused’s parenting time
  • Requiring counseling and/or anger management
  • Restraining the accused from entering the residence, property, school, place of employment of the victim
  • Awarding the victim emergency monetary relief, such as child support
  • Awarding temporary custody of a child to the accuser
  • Preventing the defendant from possessing firearms or weapons and/or ordering the search and seizure of any weapons
  • Restraining the defendant against stalking, following, or threatening to harm the protected party

Of course, the issuance of a restraining order may only be the first of many consequences if you are ultimately found guilty of domestic violence. If the alleged victim files a criminal complaint and you are convicted, you could be facing significant time behind bars and a stain on your reputation that will follow you around for decades.   

Charged With Domestic Violence? Call Helmer, Conley & Kasselman Today

Since New Jersey prosecutors aggressively pursue domestic violence charges, trying to defend yourself or thinking you can talk your way out of it can be a catastrophic mistake. Fighting these charges requires New Jersey domestic violence attorney with the experience and skill to prepare a thorough and aggressive defense in a short time-frame.

At Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, our attorneys are available on an emergency basis to immediately get to work handling such matters. Our team has more than 400 years of combined experience and a track record of positive outcomes for those accused of domestic violence. Please call 1-877-435-6371 or contact us online today to discuss your situation.

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