Unlike the average assaultive crime, a domestic violence charge certainly raises emotional, psychological, and often familial issues that are inherently woven into the persons involved. This can affect the entire texture of the defense strategy. While every matter has unique and individual facts, the right criminal defense attorney can provide insight on legal defenses and a strategic course of action to charges that can be very challenging.
It is important to remember that each domestic violence case will is unique and will present a distinctive fact pattern that must be integrated into the overall defense theory of the case.
What is a Domestic Violence charge?
Domestic violence is a type of assault and battery, distinguished where there is a relationship between the defendant and the complainant. The relationship is defined by law as a “spouse or former spouse, an individual with whom he or she has or has had a dating relationship, an individual with whom he or she has had a child in common, or a resident or former resident of his or her household.”
Do I have to be in a romantic relationship to be charged with Domestic Violence?
Although domestic violence charges are commonly associated in situations involving a romantic relationships, the definition applies to a much broader class of individuals. This distinction could allow for creative plea bargaining and should be kept in mind throughout the case.
Is a Domestic Violence charge a felony or misdemeanor?
Domestic violence may be charged at both the misdemeanor and felony levels. The level of the charge depends on the defendant’s criminal history.
- A first offense is a misdemeanor punishable by no more than 93 days’ imprisonment, a maximum fine of $500, or both. MCL 750.81(1).
- A second offense is also a misdemeanor punishible by up to a 1-year imprisonment, a maximum fine of $1,000, or both. MCL 750.81(4).
- A third or higher offense charge is a felony and may result in a up to 5-years imprisonment, a maximum fine of $5,000 or both. MCL 750.81(5).
I have been charged with Domestic Violence, what do I do?
Call the experienced attorneys at Michigan Law Services, PLLC today for a free consultation. We will go over your case and discuss the legal options and defenses you have. We are in court every day defending our clients. We make the law work for you.
Shelby Township, Michigan, OWI Defense Attorneys
As you may have learned recently, enforcement of laws against impaired driving is extremely active in southeast Michigan. The consequences of any charge of operating while intoxicated (OWI) — sometimes referred to as DWI, DUI, OWIL, OUI, or simply drunk driving — can be severe and life-changing.
If you or a family member has been charged with OWI or another alcohol-related offense such as minor in possession (MIP), please contact a criminal and traffic defense lawyer at Michigan Law Services, PLLC. We will evaluate your situation free of charge, and work to fight against a conviction or minimize consequences for you.
Knowing the Penalties and Your Legal Options Is Essential
Facing even a “basic” first-offense OWI charge without an effective lawyer is a serious risk. If you have other such charges on your record — even over a decade old — or there are aggravating factors such as an accident, this decision becomes even more critical. Jail time is a clear possibility, along with large fines, long-term drivers’ license suspension and dramatically increased insurance rates.
Investigating Your OWI Arrest and Pursuing All Defense Angles
We know the laws and have experience handling OWIs in tough-enforcing courts throughout the area — including those in Clinton Township, Warren, Roseville, Mt. Clemens and Rochester. To help you understand what is at stake, we can readily assess your case based on factors such as:
- Your prior criminal record, including previous OWI or other alcohol/drug-related offenses
- The full circumstances of your arrest
- The Michigan city and county in which you were arrested
It is possible to win dismissals and acqu
ittals in OWI cases. In order to determine how best to handle your situation, we will look at issues such as:
- Whether the police had probable cause and reasonable suspicion to stop your vehicle and arrest you
- The validity of your Breathalyzer and other physical test results, in light of other successful OWI defense cases
- The conduct of law enforcement officials throughout your arrest and detention
We have the experience — including direct insight into prosecutors’ approaches and techniques — to determine the best defense for you in any OWI case, including those involving an off-road vehicle or impaired/drunk boating. You can depend on us for an all-out effort to help you emerge with the best consequences possible.
Traffic and Criminal Defense Attorneys in Shelby Township, Michigan
Although traffic violations often do not carry the threat of jail time or state prison time that misdemeanors and felonies do, convictions disrupt people’s lives in serious ways. These offenses may adversely affect your job status and employability.
Representation by a determined, knowledgeable traffic defense attorney can make a big difference for you. At Michigan Law Services, PLLC, we can help you set realistic expectations, avoid costly mistakes, and get through your situation with minimal damage to your record, finances and future prospects.
We Approach Your Case According to Your Needs and Priorities
Dealing with any traffic matter begins with an assessment of your case and personal circumstances. Top priorities in a traffic defense are points on your driving record and the impact on your insurance rates and driving privilege.
Speeding Tickets — Traffic Signal Violations — Failure to Yield — Traffic
We are well-equipped to represent you in any traffic case, including:
- Traffic violations including driving under suspension, careless or reckless driving, speeding tickets, and offenses involving traffic signals and school buses — all of which involve assessment of points and substantial driver responsibility fees —common in heavily policed districts like those in Sterling Heights, Shelby Township, Clinton Township, Roseville, and Warren
- OWI — among the most serious of traffic-related offenses, a drunk driving charge calls for representation by an experienced attorney
Count on Energetic Defense, Beginning With a Free Consultation
The attorneys and staff at Michigan Law Services, PLLC are dedicated to understanding each client’s situation thoroughly. We are nonjudgmental, recognizing that anyone can make a mistake.
In addition, we understand the methods and priorities of prosecutors, from our own experience and substantial work in negotiations and hearings. Many civil infractions are prosecuted on the basis of an officer’s perception alone — and if there is a problem with that narrative, you can count on us to find it and turn it to your advantage.
The Holmes Youthful Trainee Act (HYTA) is a Michigan deferred sentencing statute that allows a Court to place a youth defendant, who has allegedly committed a crime, on probation with the ultimate goal avoiding a criminal conviction on a young defendant’s record. This is accomplished when the defendant successfully completes all terms of his or her probation. For those Clients, ages 17-20, seeking to enter a plea under HYTA, all that is required is that the judge agree to place the Client on HYTA status. On May 20, 2015, the Michigan Legislature amended the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act, MCL 762.11 to MCL 762.13 by expanding the ages for those who are eligible for HYTA. This amendment increased the age of eligibility to 23 years of age. However, the amendment also requires that the prosecuting attorney on the case agree to the HYTA status being granted. This means that the Client will not be granted HYTA for those offenses that occurred between ages 21-23 unless both the court and the prosecutor agree. Michigan Law Services, PLLC assist our clients with both misdemeanor and felony charges. We routinely deal with prosecutors and have successfully entered negotiated HYTA pleas for clients aged 17-23.
A negotiated HYTA plea can be used for both misdemeanor and felony charges. While there are several offences excluded from this program, the attorneys at Michigan Law Services, PLLC routinely assist young clients with HYTA pleas in Macomb, Oakland, Wayne and St. Clair Counties.
If the Court accepts a HYTA plea, the client is typically placed on probation and will be in trainee status. This status allows the plea to be held in a sealed court file rather than being publicly disclosed. This action ensures and protects the privacy of the young defendant while on probation and in trainee status. Upon successful completion of the probation by the Client, he or she will have no criminal record stemming from the underlying offense.
To discuss whether you or someone you know may be eligible for the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act (HYTA), call Michigan Law Services, PLLC at 586-991-1SUE (1783). We make the law work for you. Our goal is to defend your rights, every step of the way.