Texas laws are particularly strict when it comes to domestic violence. Many people do not fully understand the severity of a Texas domestic or family violence crime and the long lasting impact it can have on their life. Texas family violence is defined as the reckless infliction of pain on a family or household member, which can simply involve two people who live together or are dating. The charges are filed by the police department, not by the abused person. Despite popular belief, the victim has no control over the charges at all. The victim of a family violence charge does not decide what happens with the case and cannot "drop" the charges. Only the prosecutor can decide not to proceed with the case. Once an arrest has been made, the victim no longer calls the shots.
Simply based on the arrest, an emergency protective order (EPO) can be put into effect, which usually requires that you stay a certain distance from the alleged victim at all times. The EPO remains effective for 60 days for a misdemeanor assault and 90 days for a felony assault, prohibiting you from returning to your home if you live with the alleged victim. Matters can be further complicated if you work together or have children together. The victim can also apply for a protective order (PO), which can be granted for a period of up to two years.
People suspected of family violence offenses are not treated with kindness and understanding by the court system and automatically start out with a disadvantage from the perspective of prosecutors.
These severe punishments mentioned above are imposed even before a conviction ever takes place, which is why it's so important that you contact the Law Office of Meredith Troberman in Austin, Texas. Your case will most likely be assigned to County Court of Law #4, which has been designated as the Travis County family violence court. As a skilled trial lawyer and also a former prosecutor, Meredith Troberman understands this court and can navigate you through your family violence charge.
CONSEQUENCES OF FAMILY VIOLENCE CONVICTIONS
Family violence convictions carry very serious punishments. Penalties include up to one year in the county jail or two years probation, and family violence findings on your record for a misdemeanor charge.
Employers have the absolute right to refuse to hire someone who has been arrested, or convicted of an assault. Employers also have the right to terminate a person from their current job if they are arrested for a family violence assault. Landlords can refuse to rent to someone with an assault on their record which makes finding a place to live a real challenge.
Under Federal law, those persons convicted of a criminal offense involving family violence cannot purchase or possess a firearm for the rest of their lives. (Texas law prohibits the possession of a firearm within five years of a family violence conviction.) Even if you successfully complete probation for family violence, you still have a conviction on your record for the rest of your life.
There are numerous safeguards in place to protect the interest and safety of alleged domestic violence victims. Let the Law Office of Meredith Troberman be your safeguard against false accusations.