Domestic abuse is a serious problem, and the victim can take legal action against the abuser. A lawyer from a domestic violence defense law firm usually handles the case and sues the other party for monetary damages. At trial, the lawyer must prove two points: liability (which is easy to overturn if there has already been a criminal guilty verdict) and compensation (that there was actual harm done). In addition to being a civil issue, domestic violence is also criminal activity and can result in criminal prosecution in court.
What Is Domestic Abuse?
Domestic abuse, often known as “domestic violence,” is a behavior practiced in any kind of relationship to gain or keep control over an individual. It can happen in a variety of relationships, including ones between married, cohabiting, and dating couples. Children, relatives, and other household members can also become victims of domestic violence.
Abuse is any wrongful act or threat of an action, whether physical, sexual, emotional, financial, or psychological, that affects another person. This includes any action that frightens, scares, hurts, humiliates, accuses, injures, or damages another person. Anyone, irrespective of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or age, can experience domestic abuse. Domestic abuse affects people of all socioeconomic and educational levels.
Steps To Be Taken
The domestic violence victim or any witness to the incident can submit an FIR or complaint with the local police officer, the protection officer, the service provider, or directly with the magistrate. In a domestic violence case, the victim can ask for a restraining order, maintenance privileges, or alternative accommodation. In addition, one can ask for compensation for emotional suffering. For this purpose, the victim needs a local lawyer from a domestic violence defense law firm so that the case is heard by the court.
Instead of the police, a criminal case begins with the district attorney issuing a criminal complaint. In a criminal trial, the standard is higher than in a civil trial; the plaintiff must prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. If the state wins, the victim may be entitled to restitution or compensation for crime-related expenses. In a civil trial, the guilty verdict from a criminal conviction may be used to establish liability.
The lawyer will go over the four different types of damages with the victim and outline the compensation. A general summary of each is provided below:
- General Damages: The future cost of medical care and therapy, as well as the suffering.
- Special Damages: Damages that are quantifiable (receipts for medical visits, prescriptions, lost earning capacity, etc.).
- Punitive Damages: If the abuser acts maliciously, violently, dishonestly, or oppressively.
- Nominal Damages: When the injury is minimal, the abuser still needs to be penalized financially.
The right way to get started is to call a skilled lawyer from a domestic violence defense law firm. The expert lawyer can explain people’s rights, defend the victim during a criminal trial, and passionately enforce them during a civil trial. A domestic violence lawyer can help victims regain their lives and show them hope and a way out.