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Can I Go Home if I Have Been Charged with Domestic Battery?

 Posted on June 18, 2024 in Domestic Battery

Lake County, IL criminal defense lawyerBeing charged with domestic battery—whether or not the charges are true—brings a host of negative consequences, both now and in the future. It is common for a no-contact order to be issued against the charged individual. This no-contact order prevents the person charged with domestic battery from having any contact with the alleged victim. This can create serious difficulties for the person charged if he or she currently resides in the same home as the alleged victim.

Most Americans are barely getting by financially, so being required to find another place to live can be prohibitively expensive. Even those who can find temporary living quarters may need things from their home like clothing and medications. Can you go home following charges of domestic battery? The answer is not as straightforward as most people would like.

If you find yourself being charged with domestic battery, you need immediate legal assistance. An attorney who is highly skilled in Illinois domestic violence cases will make sure your rights are fully protected throughout the process.

What is Domestic Battery in the State of Illinois?

You will find the definition of Domestic Battery (Ch. 38, par. 12-3.2) under the Illinois Domestic Violence Act. Knowingly causing bodily harm or making physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with a member of your family or a member of your household constitutes domestic battery. Family and household members include spouses, former spouses, children, stepchildren, parents, and other relatives by marriage or blood, as well as those who share a common dwelling, have a dating or engagement relationship, or have a child in common.

“Simple” domestic battery is a Class A misdemeanor for first-time offenders and can trigger an order of protection.  Aggravated domestic battery can be charged as a Class 2 felony, and is usually the result of significant bodily harm, disfigurement, disability, or any type of strangulation. An individual previously convicted of domestic battery may be charged with aggravated domestic battery regardless of the extent of the injuries. Even the misdemeanor of simple domestic battery may be treated much more severely by Illinois courts than other misdemeanors.

Does a “No-Contact” Order Prevent You from Going Home?

If you have been arrested and charged with domestic battery, you may be unable to enter your home until the case is finalized if a no-contact order is issued. Issuance of a no-contact order requires evidence and proof that you are a potential danger to the alleged victim. This evidence could come in the form of testimony from other witnesses, text messages, voicemails, ER medical records, and photographic evidence of the abuse.

In general, the court will specify details of the no-contact order, such as ceasing all communication with the alleged victim and staying away from that person at home and school. For those sharing a home, there may be instructions included in the no-contact order that gives a time, date, and method of retrieving personal items from the home.

What Are the Consequences for Violating an Illinois No-Contact Order?

Your attorney may petition the court to have the no-contact order lifted early. Until the no-contact order is lifted, you must follow it to the letter. Violating a no-contact order can have extremely severe consequences that could negatively impact the underlying domestic battery charges. You could be charged with a Class A misdemeanor for a first violation and a Class 4 felony for a second or subsequent violation of your no-contact order.   

Contact a Buffalo Grove, IL Domestic Violence Lawyer

Given the devastating nature of a domestic battery conviction, those accused of the crime must immediately seek experienced legal representation. A Lake County, IL criminal defense attorney can provide crucial assistance in navigating the legal system, potentially helping you avoid a conviction for the offense. You do not have to go through this isolating experience on your own. Take advantage of the free consultation offered by The Law Offices of Matthew R. Gebhardt, P.C. at 847-239-4703 to help you get your life back on track.

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