Domestic Violence FAQs
Domestic Violence FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions About Domestic Violence Laws in Las Vegas
According to the Nevada Attorney General, domestic violence is defined as “violent crimes committed within the context of a relationship.”
It’s important to understand, Nevada domestic violence laws go beyond just romantic relationships. They address most types of domestic relationships. Under NRS 33.018, domestic violence can occur when a person commits certain crimes against one of the following, but not limited to:
● A spouse or former spouse
● Any person that is related by blood or marriage
● Any person who resides with the defendant
● Any person with whom the person has dated or is dating
● Parents of common children
● Children of parents, legal guardians, or anyone appointed as a legal guardian
● Engage in acts with the intent to cause substantial physical or mental health harm
It’s important to note that the person accusing the defendant of harassment must have a reasonable fear that their health is endangered, and the threat will be carried out.
The penalties for harassment in Nevada include possible jail time (up to six months) and a maximum $1,000 fine. Online harassment or subsequent convictions can lead to harsher punishments.
Bail for individuals convicted of domestic violence offenses in Las Vegas depends on the charges. Generally, bail for typical first-time BDV charges is around $3,000. However, felony domestic battery charges can result in bail as high as $20,000. In some cases, your defense lawyer can seek to reduce or eliminate bail by presenting a compelling argument to the judge. This will require showing the judge you have strong ties to the community, that your criminal record is not significant, that you will not endanger the “victim,” and that there are assurances you can make that you will appear at future court proceedings.
Nevada’s battery domestic violence gun laws are indistinguishable from federal regulations. That means that individuals convicted of a domestic battery in Nevada are permanently prohibited from possessing any firearms. That is the case for misdemeanor and felony convictions.
Sometimes, a judge may issue a protective order that forces the defendant to surrender possession of their firearms pending the outcome of the case. A court can also prohibit individuals convicted of stalking a family member or spouse from owning a firearm.
Misdemeanor and felony BDV charges can be sealed, but how long it takes depends on the charge. Generally, a misdemeanor conviction is eligible to be sealed seven years after the case closes. A felony domestic battery charge can be sealed ten years after the case closes.
If the charges are filed but ultimately dropped, the defendant can petition for an immediate record seal. If the domestic battery charges are reduced to a simple battery, the criminal record can be sealed two years after the case closes.
Domestic battery proceedings are not affected by an accuser’s unwillingness to press charges. That’s because prosecutors can’t know if the “victim” is forced into dropping the charges or is doing so of their own will. If the accuser refuses to cooperate with law enforcement, the prosecution must rely on the evidence, witnesses, medical records, and videos/pictures of any injuries. In some instances, victims who retract abuse allegations may face charges for making a false police report (NRS 207.280).
A “no-contact” order is exactly what the name implies. It means you can’t have any contact with the accuser/victim. Often in domestic violence cases, a judge will issue a no-contact order in order to keep the accuser safe and to de-escalate the high emotions that often accompany these types of cases. If you share children with the accuser, the no-contact order may take this into account and allow for limited contact. Again, it’s important to have a skilled and experienced attorney in your corner that understands the intricacies of domestic violence cases and who can properly advocate for you in court.
Being charged with domestic violence is a serious matter that can adversely impact your life in many ways. Charges of this kind are also based upon a personal relationship in which people sometimes have a motive to twist things or manufacture a situation to gain leverage. As the accused, it can be frustrating to have to defend yourself against charges you believe are bogus. Take comfort in knowing that we’ve handled many cases of this kind with great success. The key is to present facts to the Court showing the charges are bogus. At The Vegas Lawyers we spend a lot of time in domestic violence cases developing the facts so that we can show a judge and the prosecutor that the charges are not credible. Being charged with domestic violence is not the same as being convicted of domestic violence. At The Vegas Lawyers, we know how to successfully defend against these charges.
What Makes The Vegas Lawyers Different?
At The Vegas Lawyers, what sets us apart is our unique team. When we sign up a client, that person is represented by an entire team. We routinely discuss our clients’ cases at meetings and collaborate on how to put forward the best defenses. We come up with strategies on how to make the most persuasive defense.