What Are Domestic Violence Penalties?

Like most states, the State of Nevada takes accusations of domestic violence very seriously. A conviction for domestic violence, officially referred to as “battery domestic violence,” carries with it significant judicial and non-judicial penalties. A clear understanding of those potential penalties is crucial if you have been charged with domestic violence in Nevada.

Domestic violence penalties - The Vegas Lawyers

How Does Nevada Define Domestic Violence?

The term “domestic violence” is an umbrella term that covers numerous and varied criminal acts in which the relationship between the perpetrator and victim is a close one. Specifically, NRS 33.018 defines criminal offenses such as battery, assault, sexual assault, and false imprisonment as “domestic violence” if the alleged victim is any of the following:

  • Spouse or former spouse
  • Any other person to whom the perpetrator is related by blood or marriage
  • Any other person with whom the perpetrator has had or is having a dating relationship
  • Any other person with whom the perpetrator has a child in common
  • The minor child of any of the above-mentioned people
  • The perpetrator’s minor child or a child for whom the perpetrator has been appointed to be the legal guardian

What Are the Domestic Violence Penalties in Nevada?

The potential penalties you face if convicted of battery domestic violence (BDV) in Nevada will depend on several important factors, including the injuries suffered by the alleged victim, your criminal history (or lack thereof), and the presence or absence of a weapon during the commission of the crime.

If this is your first domestic violence conviction within the previous seven-year period, and there are no aggravating circumstances, you will likely be charged with misdemeanor BDV which carries a minimum penalty of two days in jail and a maximum of six months in jail along with 48 to 120 hours of community service and a fine of $200 to $1,000. For any domestic violence conviction, the court will likely order you to complete six months to a year of domestic violence counseling as part of your sentence.

A second domestic violence conviction without aggravating circumstances within a seven-year period remains a misdemeanor; however, it increases the penalties to a minimum of 20 days and a maximum of six months in jail, 100 to 200 hours of community service, and a $500 to $1,000 fine. A minimum of 1.5 hours per week of domestic violence counseling will also be ordered.

A third battery domestic violence conviction within a seven-year period dramatically changes the potential penalties. You will be charged with a class B felony which carries one to six years in prison and a fine of $1,000 to $5,000 if convicted. The court cannot sentence you to probation for a felony BDV conviction.

If you knew (or should have known) that the victim was pregnant at the time of the BDV, you will be charged with a gross misdemeanor, the penalty for which is up to 364 days in jail and/or up to a $2,000 fine if convicted. A subsequent offense with a pregnant victim is charged as a class B felony with a potential penalty of one to six years in prison and $1,000 to $5,000 in fines.

Domestic violence involving strangulation that did not cause serious bodily injury and without a weapon involved is charged as a class C felony, carrying a potential prison sentence of one to five years along with a fine of up to $10,000 if convicted.

If you had a deadly weapon during the commission of the crime or the victim sustained “substantial bodily harm” you will be charged with a class B felony. Substantial bodily harm is defined by Nevada law as “bodily injury which creates a substantial risk of death, or which causes serious, permanent disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ OR prolonged physical pain.” If convicted of BDV with substantial bodily injury but without a weapon involved, you may be sentenced to one to six years in prison and a fine of $1,000 to $5,000. If you had a weapon but the victim did not sustain substantial bodily injury, you face two to ten years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. If a weapon was involved and the victim suffered substantial bodily harm, the potential punishment increases to two to 15 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.

What Should I Do If I Am Facing Domestic Violence Accusations in Las Vegas?

If you have been accused of a domestic violence crime in Las Vegas, consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney at The Vegas Lawyers as soon as possible to discuss your legal options and defenses. Call us at 702-707-7000 or contact us online.