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What happens if you are convicted of domestic violence?

What happens if you are convicted of domestic violence?

Domestic violence charges are a little unusual in that a high percentage of defendants have no previous criminal record. If you have been arrested for CDV this may be your first exposure to the criminal justice system.

As long as you do not have any previous domestic violence convictions, and your case does not rise to the level of felony domestic violence, you should be charged with misdemeanor criminal domestic violence.

The penalties for a CDV conviction are the same if you plead guilty, plead no-contest or are found guilty after a trial.

There are standard penalties with any CDV conviction that cannot be adjusted by the officer, prosecutor or the Court. They are:

  • A criminal record that is available to the public, will show up on background checks and cannot be expunged in the same time frame as other first time misdemeanor convictions
  • A restriction on possession, carrying or purchasing firearms
  • Restrictions on international travel (some countries won't allow you in)
  • Automatic enhancement of any subsequent domestic violence charge

There are other penalties which can only be set by the Court. They are:   

  • A fine of up to $5,000. Whether or not you are allowed a payment plan is up to Judge
  • Thirty days in the county jail
  • Mandatory six months of domestic abuse counseling at an approved facility

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