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Spousal Violence Lawyer Salt Lake City, UT
If you’ve been charged with domestic violence, call a spousal violence lawyer Salt Lake CIty, UT has to offer.
One of the most serious crimes you can be charged with is domestic violence. When a person has been charged, one of the first things that must happen in the criminal process is called arraignment. Basically, arraignment is your first court appearance. A big question is whether or not your Salt Lake City, Utah spousal violence lawyer should be at your arraignment. This simple guide will answer this question.
Should Your Spousal Violence Lawyer Be at Your Arraignment?
First things first, it is not a requirement for your attorney to be at your arraignment. It also will not be upsetting to the judge for your attorney to be there. This means it is your choice. So, the next question is whether you should bring your Salt Lake City, UT spousal violence lawyer.
The answer to this question depends slightly. If you have a good understanding of what happens at an arraignment and you are confident that you can speak for yourself, then you may think you have no reason for your spousal violence lawyer to come. However, having legal representation present will be very beneficial. If you have been arrested and are waiting for your arraignment, there is a very strong possibility you have been jailed. Remember, you do have the right to contact a domestic violence lawyer Salt Lake City UT provides even if you are being held by police.
What Happens at an Arraignment?
So what actually happens at an arraignment? Once you have an understanding of what the process is like, you can make an informed decision of whether you want spousal violence lawyer in Salt Lake City, UT present. Essentially, three things happen at an arraignment:
- Explain the charges – It is a constitutional right to know what you are being charged with. At the arraignment, the judge will ensure that there is no confusion.
- Set bail – The judge will set bail for you, which is the fee you must pay if you want to leave jail during the time leading up to your trial.
- Ask for a plea – You must submit a plea at your arraignment. This is the most important aspect.
When you submit a plea, you have three choices. If you plead guilty, the judge will schedule a sentencing date. If you plead innocent, then a date will be set for your trial. Finally, you can plead no contest. As you can see, submitting a plea is one of the critical reasons why you should have a spousal violence lawyer Salt Lake City, UT clients trust representing you, even at an arraignment. Call Rasmussen & Miner for assistance.
Potential Penalties for a Spousal Violence Conviction
Spousal violence is a type of domestic violence that involves a violent act committed against someone who is in a domestic relationship, such as a spouse, partner, dating partner, sexual partner, or relative. In addition to criminal charges and penalties, an act of domestic violence can be grounds for court issued protective orders.
Threats and Physical Violence
Many states not only prohibit actual acts of violence, but also threats of violence. For example, if the defendant causes a victim to feel unsafe or reasonably fearful of receiving harm, even if that never happens, domestic violence charges can result.
If a child witnesses the act of violence, additional charges may apply. In Utah, if a child witnesses the spousal violence, the defendant can face child abuse charges.
Court Ordered Treatment Programs
Depending on the state, not all domestic violence convictions will result in a prison sentence. Often, judges will impose a sentence that is specific to spousal violence, in addition to a range of penalties. For example, a person charged with first degree assault against a stranger might also face the same charges if they assaulted their spouse. However, the person who committed the offense against their spouse might also be required to undergo mandatory domestic violence treatment at a specialized center.
Immigration Consequences for a Domestic Violence Charge
If you are not a U.S. Citizen, your immigration status might be affected. Under Federal Laws, anyone who has been convicted of domestic violence can be deported. A spousal violence lawyer in Salt Lake City, UT should be sought to avoid deportation.
Is It Possible to Have the Spousal Violence Charges Dropped?
It is unfortunately common for a victim of spousal violence to want the charges dropped against the perpetrator. All too often, the victim believes the charges could affect their relationship or the perpetrators employment.
It is important to understand that state and federal domestic violence laws are very strict. The frequency of these cases have also increased, or at least the reports of them have. In the 1990s, many states had domestic violence diversion programs where charges would be dropped as long as the perpetrator admitted to the act, apologized, and agreed to get some kind of help.
Although some states have found these diversion programs to be successful, many have not – especially when repeat offenders are involved. Because of the success rates, most states no longer have diversion programs.
As soon as a report of spousal violence, or domestic violence, has been made, and the police have gotten involved, it is not a matter of the victim versus their spouse. Although the prosecutor will need the victim to cooperate, he or she does not have the final say about whether the case will proceed.
If you are concerned about your spouse or partner being charged, you can speak with the prosecutor or a family lawyer. It may be possible to reach a plea bargain. It might also be a good idea to talk with a counselor about your situation.
Call Rasmussen & Miner now.