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What you need to know about New York’s domestic violence laws

At the Law Office of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq. PLLC in New York, we know that facing a domestic violence charge is a devastating experience for you. Possibly you and your spouse or partner were arguing and (s)he called law enforcement officials saying (s)he was afraid of you and what you might do. Whether this fear was valid, and whether or not (s)he wants to pursue charges against you, it is already too late.

When officers come to your home in response to a domestic violence call, they must, under New York law, arrest you. Since a criminal prosecution does not necessarily depend on the cooperation of your alleged victim, you face serious criminal penalties if convicted, regardless of the fact that your alleged victim wants the charges dropped.

Qualifying domestic violence victims

As FindLaw explains, domestic violence is a family crime in New York. This means that your alleged victim must fall into one of the following categories:

  • Your current or former spouse or partner
  • Someone related to you by blood or marriage
  • Someone with whom you are currently living, or have lived
  • Someone with whom you share parentage of a child
  • Someone with whom you are having, or have had, an intimate relationship

Types of domestic violence crimes

New York has no specific domestic violence laws per se. Rather, the charges you may face include a variety of crimes you allegedly committed against your alleged victim, including the following:

  • Assault and/or battery
  • Sexual misconduct and/or abuse
  • Stalking
  • Menacing
  • Strangulation
  • Kidnapping

Domestic violence penalties

Depending on which crime(s) the prosecutor alleges you committed, you face serious penalties if convicted. For instance, conviction of a crime such as second-degree menacing or third-degree assault is a class A misdemeanor for which you could spend up to one year in jail and pay a fine of up to $1,000. Conviction of a more serious violent crime such as first-degree assault or first-degree strangulation is a felony for which you could spend from three to 25 years in prison and pay a fine of up to $5,000.

For more information on this subject, please visit this page of our website. 


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Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC
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Law office of Scott G. Cerbin ESQ., PLLC