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What Is the Cost of Going Through a Domestic Violence Case?

Interviewer: What do you estimate the cost the fines and fees are for the typical domestic violence case, whether you’re convicted or not?

The Costs Can Range From Hundreds to Thousands of Dollars

Adam: It’s going to depend on whether we’re talking about a misdemeanor or a felony. The cost could probably be, at the very least with the court costs, going to be several hundred dollars.

That is a conservative estimate and likely to cost more. If probation is imposed you’re going to have sanctions where you’re going to have to pay the probation reporting fees, so you could increase that estimate into the thousands of dollars.

Will Probation Be a Part of a Plea Agreement or a Conviction?

Interviewer: Is probation typically a part of a plea agreement or part of the conviction on domestic violence cases?

Harming a Pregnant Woman Is a Felony Level Domestic Abuse Charge

Adam: I’d say it’s fairly common even on the felony level. The biggest issue and one that levies the stiffest penalties is whether the victim was pregnant at that time. If there was any harm to the fetus or even if she was just pregnant would be sufficient grounds to bump the charge up into a felony level.

Interviewer: What other factors would take a misdemeanor domestic violence to a felony? What if there are minors in the house who were present at the time of the abuse, or the violence was committed against them as well?

Adam: The biggest issue is if there any harm to the fetus that resulted in a termination of the pregnancy because of the violence. I would confidently say this situation would result in the highest level of felony charge for domestic abuse.

Interviewer: What about if they’re a husband and wife and they have kids, what would happen then if let’s say the husband strikes the wife, the kids are present. What happens in that kind of scenario?

Adam: Typically, if it’s a first offense then you’re probably just looking at the misdemeanor level. This is because in our revised code the stiffest punishment is imposed when a pregnant woman is harmed.

If Children Are Present When Domestic Abuse Occurs, the Alleged Abuser Will Have to Petition Juvenile Court for Visitation

Interviewer: What about if there are children in the home? Will the judge issue a no contact order?

Adam: First of all we’re obviously dealing with a criminal level that’s going to be handled by a different type of judge, and it will be handled in domestic or juvenile court.

A judge can order no contact and if the alleged defendant was a male, and they were his children he would be barred from any contact with them.

The male defendant would actually have to petition domestic or juvenile court to get visitation. He would have an extra step just to see his children.

By Adam Hunt

Ohio Criminal Defense Attorney Adam Hunt
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