We Provide Compassionate Counsel in Domestic Violence Matters
Many couples fight, but when an argument escalates to the point of physical violence, serious and unfortunate consequences can result for all parties involved. Domestic violence is defined as a repeated and patterned use of controlling and coercive behaviors to direct or limit a domestic partner’s feelings, thoughts and actions. Examples of behaviors that can constitute domestic violence include stalking, harassment, sexual assault, emotional abuse, isolation and physical violence.
Domestic violence can occur between two individuals in any type of domestic relationship – including same-sex partnerships. Contrary to stereotypes, women can be domestic violence assailants, and men are increasingly coming forward as victims.
At Shebell & Shebell, we represent victims of domestic violence, as well as those who have been unfairly accused.
Domestic Violence Defense
There are two sides to every story. If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence, you are a victim and you deserve the very best legal representation. Those who have been charged with domestic violence face a litany of serious, life-changing consequences, including:
- A temporary or permanent restraining order
- Being forcibly removed from your home
- Deportation if you are an undocumented immigrant
- A court order preventing you from seeing your children
- A court order requiring you to pay the victim’s medical bills
- A court order preventing you from owning a firearm
- A court order requiring you to pay attorney’s fees
- Court mandated support or housing payments to the victim
- Court mandated drug and alcohol testing
- Court mandated counseling
- Being labeled as a “violent offender”
Unfortunately, false accusations of domestic violence are common, particularly in situations where custody is at stake, or a couple is going through a divorce. In domestic violence cases, even if the victim decides that they no longer want to proceed with charges, the prosecutor may step in and file charges against you based on existing evidence. If you have been falsely accused, the skilled lawyers at Shebell & Shebell will aggressively protect your reputation.
Protection for Victims of Domestic Violence
The experienced lawyers at Shebell & Shebell help victims of domestic violence take all appropriate measures to protect their families. Often, that process begins with a restraining order. Restraining orders, also called orders of protection, are used by the courts to protect victims of domestic violence from continued abuse. Victims of stalking, harassment, domestic violence and sexual assault should all apply for a restraining order against alleged abusers. In divorce cases, a party may obtain a restraining order to protect not only themselves, but also their children, home and their personal property.
When the court grants a restraining order, local police are placed on notice. Any future harassment, threats or contact can result in arrest of the alleged assailant. Courts tend to grant restraining orders quickly when an attorney can demonstrate its necessity.
The process for filing a restraining order begins by filing a complaint at the Superior Court, or through the police department in the event the Court is closed. A judge may then grant a Temporary Restraining Order, or TRO, against the accused, usually without their knowledge. The police then serve the accused with the TRO. The TRO usually stays in place until both parties appear in court. If a judge determines that an act of domestic violence occurred, and that a Final Restraining Order is warranted, the Court can offer a number of solutions, including: issuing a Final Restraining Order to protect children and property, granting sole-custody of children to one party, ordering payment to the victim, and/or ordering anger management and counseling.
New Jersey is one of the few states that offers permanent restraining orders to victims of domestic violence. In most states, a restraining order only lasts for a year or eighteen months. A Final Restraining Order in New Jersey is permanent and unending, unless modified by the court with a superseding order.
In addition to helping our clients obtain restraining orders, the lawyers at Shebell & Shebell assist our clients with:
- Enforcing restraining orders
- Obtaining separate maintenance to help victims exit abusive situations
- Modification of child custody arrangements
- Obtaining money damages for assault and battery torts
Experienced New Jersey Domestic Violence Lawyers
Whether you have been falsely accused, or are a victim of domestic violence, it is important to contact a capable attorney immediately. At Shebell & Shebell, we know what steps to take to protect our clients’ interests. Call us at 866-957-5237 or contact us online today.