San Francisco Domestic Violence Attorney
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States, which equates to ten million people abused every year. Statistics say one in four women and one in nine men experience severe intimate partner physical violence, sexual violence or stalking. One in three women and one in four men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner, and one in seven women and one in 25 men have been physically injured. Here in California, 34.9% of women and 31.1% of men will experience domestic violence in their lifetimes. California law enforcement receives well over 150,000 calls every year, and countless more incidents of domestic violence go unreported.
If you have experienced domestic violence or are in fear for your safety or that of your children, or if you have been unfairly blamed for acts of domestic violence you didn’t commit, Cardwell Steigerwald Young LLP can help. Our family law attorneys provide knowledgeable advice and zealous advocacy on your behalf in domestic violence proceedings and related family law matters such as divorce or child custody cases. For immediate assistance, call our San Francisco domestic violence attorney today.
How Domestic Violence Is Defined in California Law
California law defines domestic violence to prohibit certain types of acts against certain types of people. Domestic violence includes acts such as the following committed against a current or former spouse, current or former household member, dating partner or intimate partner, a person with whom one shares a child in common, or a relative:
- Physical assault
- Sexual assault
- Reckless injury
- Attempt to injure
- Put in fear of imminent harm to self or others
- Emotional or psychological abuse
- Harassing calls or texts
- Destruction of property
Domestic Violence Restraining Orders
A person in fear of imminent violence can get an emergency protective order put in place any time of the day or night by calling the police. One can also go to court to get a temporary restraining order (TRO). A TRO can order the abuser to move out of the house and prohibit them from having any contact with the victim. A person under a restraining order is also prohibited from possessing firearms.
One can get a TRO by going to court and demonstrating the need for the order without the target of the order being made aware of the proceeding. However, before the TRO can be renewed or made permanent, the court will hold a hearing at which both parties can appear and argue why the order should or should not be extended. CSY Family Law Group provides forceful and effective advocacy for clients pursuing or facing restraining orders in California courts in all counties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Domestic Violence and Divorce
The decisions made by a court granting a restraining order can impact a current or future divorce in many ways. If requested, the court can make orders regarding child support, child custody and visitation as part of the restraining order. The court can temporarily award the marital home to the victim and force the abuser to move out. If the acts of domestic violence impacted the couple’s property (forcing the victim to incur medical bills or lose their jobs, hiding assets to control a spouse), then the court can order that the victim gets to keep all of their pension or retirement, even if a portion would otherwise be community property subject to division. Under California law, a person convicted of felony domestic violence against their spouse in the past five years cannot get spousal support, and there is a rebuttable presumption against awarding spousal support to a spouse convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence in the past five years. A presumption exists against awarding child custody to someone convicted of domestic violence, and the restraining order could even order them not to have contact with their children. The court can also set the date of separation as the date when domestic violence occurred, further impacting the division of community property.
With all there is at stake, it’s imperative to get skilled and dedicated help from an experienced family law attorney when dealing with a domestic violence restraining order or other proceedings such as a divorce or child custody hearing where allegations of domestic violence are involved.
Contact Cardwell Steigerwald Young LLP Today
If you feel that you or your children are in danger from a family member, co-parent, household member, intimate partner or relative, get to a safe place and call 911 or a resource such as the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or visit www.TheHotline.org. For legal advice and assistance dealing with domestic violence and divorce or other family law issues, call Cardwell Steigerwald Young LLP for immediate help. Contact our San Francisco domestic violence attorneys today.