No one disputes that domestic violence is a serious issue. Victims deserve protection, and those who commit acts of violence, harassment or intimidation against those with whom they have or had a close relationship should be held accountable. Too often, however, innocent individuals face false or exaggerated claims of domestic violence. When that happens, those accused of such acts can see their lives upended immediately, with the loss of their families, reputations, careers, and freedom all a very real possibility. If you have been charged with domestic violence, you need an experienced Albany domestic violence attorney on your side immediately.
The experienced team of committed advocates and support staff at the Law Office of James E. Tyner knows all that is on the line for individuals facing domestic violence allegations. We also know the unique urgency of the situation when police arrive to address a domestic violence accusation. Arrests are almost automatic and common notions of due process can seem non-existent as police take immediate action to protect the purported victim.
If you need an experienced, aggressive attorney to protect your rights, family and future, contact Tyner Legal today regarding charges such as:
When police in New York are called to deal with a domestic disturbance, they almost always arrest one of the people involved. Although this may be the only dependable way to separate the parties and prevent escalation, another common result is an unjustified criminal charge or an order of protection that will have serious consequences in your life.
At the Law Office of James E. Tyner, we take a balanced, assertive approach to defending you against a charge or conviction that can expose you to:
There are many motivations for leveling such devastating but untruthful domestic violence charges, whether out of spite, revenge or as a tool to gain advantage in divorce, custody or other family law proceedings. That latter reason alone results in the unnecessary and unjust disruptions of tens of thousands of lives every year. In fact, one report found that:
In New York, domestic violence charges are typically based on the same underlying criminal offenses that are committed by individuals who don’t know their victims, such as assault, disorderly conduct, harassment, rape or murder. What makes such violent acts domestic violence is that there is a current or former intimate or familial relationship between the perpetrator and the victim. That means domestic violence charges can be brought not only based on acts committed by current or former spouses or romantic partners but can also be based on violent incidents between parents and children, siblings or those sharing the same household.
Many people accused of domestic assault in Albany mistakenly believe that if they can only get the alleged victim to “drop the charges,” they will be free and clear. But accusers don’t make the ultimate decision whether to prosecute -- prosecutors do. Even if the parties reconcile, prosecutors can and often will still seek a conviction.
Depending on the nature of the alleged domestic violence offense, penalties upon conviction can range from up to a year in jail for misdemeanor offenses to years or decades in New York state prison for felony domestic violence offenses.
As noted, police and prosecutors take an immediate and urgent approach when responding to allegations of domestic violence. That is because they know that as serious as the allegations may be, acts of domestic violence can and often do lead to even more violent crimes.
As such, New York law gives law enforcement officials a powerful and sweeping tool to keep alleged perpetrators from having any contact with their alleged victims: orders of protection.
Interchangeably called a restraining order, an order of protection can dramatically limit the rights of someone accused of domestic violence. If an order of protection is issued against you, you can be prohibited from contacting the victim, you can be forced to stay away from your children, you can even get kicked out of your own home, among other severe consequences.
As bad as that is, if you violate the terms of an order of protection, you could face additional charges and wind up behind bars even if you are ultimately acquitted of any underlying domestic violence charge. If the order was entered as part of or concurrent with divorce or child custody proceedings, it could also have a negative impact on your parental rights.
While some orders of protection are temporary, they can sometimes become permanent, restricting your rights indefinitely. Given the disruption that an order of protection can cause and the consequences of violating such an order, even inadvertently, you need to consult with an experienced domestic violence attorney in Albany immediately. Your attorney can help protect your rights and work to have the restrictions on your life lifted as soon as possible.
Depending on the circumstances and relationship between the parties, orders of protection can be issued by a New York Family Court, Supreme Court or Criminal Court judge. A judge can issue an order while a case is pending or as part of a final case resolution.
These orders are usually entered when someone the accused knows petitions a judge for the order based on allegations of such acts as:
A key point about orders of protection is that they can be issued based on allegations alone, so long as those allegations are based on credible evidence and testimony. Prosecutors do not have to meet the same high burden of proof to obtain an order of protection that they do to obtain a conviction on domestic violence charges.
If you are charged with domestic violence in Albany, there are important steps you can take to protect your rights and increase your chances of a positive outcome.
Being falsely accused of domestic violence can shake you to your core and threaten so much you hold dear. At the Law Office of James E. Tyner, we know how traumatic and disruptive these allegations can be, and we know how scary it can be to face prosecutors determined to obtain a conviction. That is why we spare no effort in our defense against these charges.
We also know that incidents of alleged domestic violence can happen any time of day or night. That is why we are available to respond to calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We endeavor to return calls within an hour so you can get the advice, counsel and guidance you need as soon as possible. If you are facing the ordeal of domestic violence allegations and are looking for a domestic violence lawyer in Albany who will be there for you both inside the courtroom and out, contact the Law Office of James E. Tyner today to arrange for your free, confidential initial consultation.
Domestic violence crimes are any type of crime that occurs between people with a familial relationship. Such crimes can include crimes between spouses, intimate partners or other people related by blood or marriage.
Specific examples of domestic violence crimes include:
The emotional highs and lows of any relationship means that sometimes, people don’t always get along. This can result in one person being charged with a domestic violence crime while the motivations of the “victim” may be what is really behind the charges. The “victim” might be using the criminal justice system as a weapon to get what they want in an ongoing divorce or to increase their parenting time. They may simply want to harass or annoy the other person and watch them go through the pains of being arrested and treated like a common criminal when, in fact, they did nothing wrong.
Domestic violence charges can be misdemeanor or felony level charges. No matter what, your reputation, freedom and relationship with your loved ones and children is at risk. It is important that you retain a skilled domestic violence lawyer to help you navigate an order of protection which may be issued at the beginning of your case to help prevent your case from getting worse while it is pending in the court system.
Orders of Protection can be filed in either Family or Criminal Court (or both), depending on the incident at hand. There are certain steps that must be taken in order to file a petition. Furthermore, prior to petitioning either court for the protective order, certain requirements must be met. Below are the steps and prerequisites each court requires:
To file an Order of Protection in Family Court:
To file an Order of Protection in Criminal Court:
It is typical for an Order of Protection (also known as a restraining order) in New York to last about a year. However, depending on the circumstances of the domestic violence incident, an Order of Protection can last up to five years. Additionally, an existing Order of Protection can be extended at any point if the respondent violated the terms of order in any way or their actions escalated in such a manner as to further threaten the safety of the other party (or parties) in question.
In certain circumstances, yes, a protective order can be modified or even dismissed. In order to do so, either the respondent or the plaintiff can petition the Family Court to change the terms of the Order of Protection. However, if the order was issued in Criminal Court, it cannot be altered.
For protective orders issued in Family Court, the most common types of changes include the addition of an exception to the existing order. For example, an order may be modified to allow the respondent child visitation rights. Another example can involve an improved relationship between the parties in question, such as spouses making a mutual decision to reconciliate. A third example for modifying an existing Order of Protection derives from the need for both parties to have contact, such as for the purposes of making a decision regarding the sale of mutual property or decisions regarding healthcare for a child.
Conversely, the Family Court may add additional restrictions to an existing protective order if the family’s situation has worsened in any way. Examples of actions that may increase the terms of a protective order include stalking, aggravated harassment, violent threats, physical assault, property damage, or if the respondent was in violation of the original terms of the order.
A temporary Order of Protection is often issued before a final court decision is made if it is in the best interest of the party who suffered from domestic violence. Temporary Orders of Protection will expire once a case is closed, but if the case is ongoing, they may be extended until a final decision is made. Furthermore, a Temporary Order of Protection can be issued even if there is no proof that the defendant has committed domestic violence (or any other type of crime). It is considered more of a preemptive measure to ensure the safety of the alleged victim.
Oftentimes, individuals are falsely accused of domestic violence and other crimes. The reasons can vary, but among the most common are jealousy, revenge (oftentimes for cheating), an attempt to “hurt” or “punish” the person being accused for financial reasons, an attempt to obtain full custody of children, an attempt to obtain property, among other reasons.
However, if you believe you were falsely accused of domestic violence, it is imperative that you seek legal help right away with an attorney experienced in these types of criminal allegations. Also, be sure to document any incidents that have transpired between yourself and the person who has formally accused you, such as threatening text messages, emails, or voicemails. If applicable, take pictures of any physical harm to yourself or to your property if you were assaulted by the accusing individual. Finally, take note of the dates and times the accusing party made any accusations against you during personal conversations or in public, or any time in which the person acted erratically, along with a summary of the incident. The more evidence you have, the better your chances of having the false charges dismissed.
If you are facing false domestic violence accusations, an attorney at our firm will gather all available evidence and strive for a dismissal of charges. Revealing your accuser’s real motive, such as positioning for a divorce action, jealousy or basic anger, may be a critical step.
If your defense ultimately requires going to trial, you will be represented by a veteran defense attorney with extensive experience in New York criminal courts and over 15 years of experience representing individuals in domestic violence cases. Alternatively, if you know you made a mistake and want to minimize the consequences, our firm has the negotiating skills and credibility to protect your most critical interests. That is why he works tirelessly to obtain the best possible outcome for every domestic violence client he has the privilege to represent.
Please do not make the mistake of assuming domestic violence charges will go away or “get worked out.” Take a critical step to protect yourself, your relationships with your family and your future: email James today or call 518-783-3800 now to be represented by a reputable Albany domestic violence law firm.
I hired Mr. Tyner last summer. Very receptive, communicated well, did everything that needed to be done, and wound up never having any charges filed after he helped out. Worth the money for peace of mind.
Posted by: Jared Carpentier