How a Domestic Violence Charge Can Affect Your Life

Written by Jerry Steele

Domestic Violence

How a Domestic Violence Charge Can Affect Your Life

Written by Jerry Steele

Domestic Violence
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For more than 20 years, Steele Law has successfully guided individuals and business entities through the unique challenges posed by criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as prosecutions in state and federal courts nationwide.
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To highlight the importance of hiring fierce legal representation if you’re facing domestic violence charges, it’s helpful to understand the potential consequences of a conviction. These serious crimes are treated as such in the BC court system. But it isn’t only legal penalties you’ll face if you’re found guilty. 

Consequences of Domestic Violence Charges

These are some of the ways a conviction can affect your life:

Time in prison

There is a wide range of possible sentences for domestic violence charges. This depends on the nature and severity of the crime, your prior Canadian criminal record (if any), and other factors. At one end of the scale is simple assault or battery, which may result in probation, counselling, community service or program attendance. At the other end are more serious offences, such as aggravated assault against a spouse/partner, which can carry a sentence of up to 14 years in prison.

Fines and other financial penalties

In addition to jail or probation time, you could face fines, too. You may also be responsible for additional expenses such as court costs and restitution (compensation for the victim’s losses). Often, people are concerned with how much a lawyer costs for domestic violence. This is understandable; however, they also often forget to consider the more long-term costs of a conviction, which will keep adding up after the case is over.

Difficulty finding employment

A criminal record of any kind can make it much harder to secure work. Even if you’re qualified and the employer is willing, they may have policies that prevent them from hiring anyone with a conviction related to violence. This can result in serious financial difficulties, especially if you can’t find work for an extended period of time.

Loss of custody or visitation rights

If the victim in your case is a spouse/partner and/or you have children together, a conviction could jeopardize your ability to see them. In some cases, this can lead to the loss of custody or limitations on visitation rights. This can devastate both the parent and child(ren) involved.

Strain on relationships

Domestic violence can seriously damage all relationships, whether it’s with the victim, family members, friends, or community members. A conviction can cause strain and even permanent damage to these relationships. Often, these accusations also lead to isolation and difficulty maintaining healthy connections with friends and family or partners.

Criminal record

A domestic violence conviction creates a permanent criminal record. This record isn’t something to take lightly—having a criminal record in Canada can impact your life in many ways, from employment opportunities to housing options. It may also lead to difficulty obtaining professional licences and certain government benefits.

Mandatory counselling and classes

In some cases, a domestic violence conviction in Canada may come with mandatory counselling or rehabilitation programs. These programs can be costly and time-consuming, adding an additional burden on top of the legal and financial consequences of a conviction.

Get a Solid Defence for Domestic Violence Charges in BC

Now that you are aware of the potential consequences of a domestic violence conviction, you’ll understand why hiring a competent and experienced domestic violence defence lawyer is a good chance at minimizing or avoiding these consequences. Call Jerry Steele today at 778-700-0012 for a consultation and to learn more about how we can help you with your domestic violence case.