Were you involved in a family altercation and now face criminal charges? Domestic violence – usually called “family violence” in Texas – may be categorized as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on what specific behavior prosecutors accuse you of doing. Either way, the penalties can cost you time, money, your reputation, and your future.
If you live on the east side of the Metroplex, a Balch Springs family and domestic violence lawyer from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg wants to protect your rights. Our team can get to the truth of what really happened and fight for an outcome that allows you to resume your normal life as quickly as possible.
What Is Family Violence?
You can find the legal definition of family violence at TX Family Code § 71.004. It includes:
- Intentionally causing physical, psychological, or sexual harm to any member of your family or household.
- Threatening any member of your family or household with such harm.
- An act or threat of violence against anyone you are currently dating or have dated in the past.
- Endangering a child in your household by placing them in an abusive situation or failing to take reasonable steps to prevent their abuse.
No matter the specifics of the charges against you, you deserve the representation of your choice and fair treatment from the legal system. The Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg can advocate for you during this challenging time. We can help you better understand the charges against you, how the law works, and what we can do to protect you from an unfair conviction.
What Our Family Violence Lawyers Do
When a prospective client calls us about their family violence case, we first provide a free consultation. This way, you can learn more about our services and how they can benefit you at no cost or obligation. We can conduct this consultation over the phone, usually within a matter of minutes.
Once you hire us, we can assign a family and domestic violence lawyer to manage all aspects of your Balch Springs case. Our founder, Randy Isenberg, has over 30 years of experience in the legal world – experience that he and his team now want to put to work for you. Our job involves:
- Explaining the legal process: The legal system can seem confusing to those outside it. We can tell you what is happening at every step of the process and help you decide the future of your case.
- Investigating the alleged crime: We can build your defense with evidence from eyewitnesses, experts, police reports, and more. We can also exchange evidence with the prosecution to ensure they have not mishandled your case.
- Meeting with the prosecutor: Sometimes, we can get the charges against you reduced or negotiate a plea deal that enables you to avoid severe penalties.
- Advocating for you at trial: Our team can prepare your case for trial, and your lawyer can argue on your behalf in front of a judge and jury. In addition, we may advise you not to testify.
- Filing all paperwork: Trial exhibits, court motions, briefs, and other documentation – we’ll manage all these for you.
- Appealing an unfavorable decision: If the jury does not decide in your favor, you might have the right to appeal to a higher court. We can help you explore this option if necessary.
Family Violence Penalties in Texas
The penalties you face if convicted vary based on what the jury found you guilty of doing, the harm that resulted, and whether this is your first offense.
TX Penal Code § 22 classifies many types of family violence as felonies, which carry severe penalties. TX Penal Code § 12 details possible punishments for the three felony grades often associated with family violence:
- Third-degree felony: This is the least serious type of felony. For example, you may face third-degree felony charges if you allegedly attempted to strangle a relative. You could pay up to $10,000 in fines and spend up to 10 years in prison.
- Second-degree felony: This charge may apply if you allegedly caused “serious bodily injury” or displayed “a deadly weapon,” such as a firearm. Along with a $10,000 fine, a judge may sentence you to up to 20 years behind bars.
- First-degree felony: Prosecutors often seek first-degree felony charges for intentionally injuring a child or an elderly or disabled family member. First-degree felonies also carry a maximum fine of $10,000, but the potential prison time increases to 99 years.
Balch Springs Family and Domestic Violence Lawyer Near Me (214) 696-9253
Penalties Have Real Consequences
The above penalties can have a long-lasting and adverse effect on your:
- Mental health: Incarceration can devastate your psychological health, especially if you already have a mental illness.
- Rights: When it comes to violent crimes, the arresting officer may have the right to confiscate any guns you own. A conviction could permanently rob you of the right to own firearms, vote, apply for a government job, and more.
- Social relationships: Friends and family may become reluctant to associate with you after a conviction. Some may even be afraid of you.
- Career: A lengthy prison sentence would prevent you from working and cost you the job you have now. Any conviction could also deter prospective employers from offering you a job.
- Reputation: Family violence is a highly stigmatized crime. If your community believes you are guilty, they may never respect you as they used to do.
Even misdemeanor convictions can throw your life into chaos, although you may pay less in fines and spend less time behind bars. No matter what type of charge you face, it is a good idea to get legal help as soon as possible.
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Call Us for a Free Consultation
A family and domestic violence lawyer from the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg can minimize or even eliminate the charges and penalties you face. If you live in Balch Springs, Texas, call our firm today at (214) 696-9253. Our team members are available 24/7 to discuss our legal services and how we can defend your rights.