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New York Domestic Violence Frequently Asked Questions

What is domestic violence in New York?

Domestic violence is aggressive behavior between individuals who have an intimate or familial relationship. While domestic violence typically refers to cases where the victim a spouse, girlfriend, or boyfriend, the domestic violence victims can also be a child, roommate, or a relative. Domestic violence includes both physical abuse, abusive language, and psychological abuse.

Is domestic violence a felony in New York?

In New York there is not a specific offense called “domestic violence.” An act that amounts to domestic violence can be a number of different criminal acts such as stalking, assault, rape, kidnapping, or murder. Depending on the criminal act, a domestic violence related crime could be a misdemeanor or a felony. Domestic violence that may lead to a felony charge includes:

  • Assault resulting in a serious physical injury to the victim
  • Assault using a deadly weapon
  • Violence or abuse inflicted on a minor
  • Sexual assault
  • Stalking that involves the display of a weapon or that results in the victim suffering an injury
What is misdemeanor domestic violence?

In New York if the domestic violence involves a criminal act that is considered less severe than a felony act, the charge will be a misdemeanor. For example, if domestic violence act is a simple assault that does not result in a serious injury to the victim, the defendant would face a misdemeanor assault charge. Similarly, if the act is stalking and no weapon is involved and the victim is not injured, the defendant is likely to face a misdemeanor charge. However, an act that would otherwise result in a misdemeanor charge can be raised to a felony crime if it is a second or third conviction.

If I am convicted of domestic violence in New York, will I go to prison?

If a defendant is convicted of a crime based on a domestic dispute, there are a number of factors that will go into sentencing. First, if the crime is a felony, especially a violent felony, it is more likely that the defendant will spend some time in prison. If the defendant has a prior criminal record, there is a greater chance that the sentence will include prison. Another aggravating factor would be if the defendant caused the victim to suffer a serious injury. Sentencing may also include probation, fines, and community service.

Still have questions? Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates for help

An accusation of domestic violence can lead to incarceration, job loss, and estrangement from family and friends. Domestic violence cases are complicated. It is important that you have experienced representation. The domestic violence attorneys at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates have extensive experience defending clients in New York criminal court, family court, and supreme court. We can help. Contact us at 800.NY.NY.LAW (800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of crimes in the following locations: Suffolk County, Westchester County, Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, and Staten Island.

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