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I've Been Charged with Domestic Violence - What Should I Do?

Posted Monday, February 5, 2018 by Lizanne Padula.

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Washington State has strict laws when it comes to alleged acts of Domestic Violence (DV). Allegation of DV crimes are taken seriously by law enforcement and prosecutors. In fact, Washington State law requires law enforcement to make an arrest if they have probable cause to believe an act of DV has occurred within the last 4 hours. If you’ve been charged with DV there are things that you should do and information you should have.

I’ve Been Charged with Domestic Violence - What Should I Do?

If you’ve been charged with an act of DV, we encourage you to do the following:

Exercise your right to remain silent. If you are being questioned by law enforcement regarding an alleged DV crime, it is usually in your best interest to remain silent. You do not have to answer questions posed to you by law enforcement. Be polite but firm in your desire to remain silent until you speak with your attorney.

Exercise your right to an attorney. You have the right to have an attorney present during questioning and during all stages of the legal process. It is usually advisable to wait and discuss your side of the story with your attorney and let her guide you on how to best convey your side of the story to law enforcement.

We urge you to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney. DV charges are serious and you need to mount a strong defense from the beginning. We offer free consultations and we answer our phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us today at 425-883-3366.

Understand the charges against you. It is critical that you understand the charges against you. For the State to secure a criminal conviction it must prove each element of the crimes charged. When you understand the charges, you will be empowered to help in your defense. Your criminal defense attorney can help you understand the charges, the legal process, and explain what penalties you may be facing if convicted.

Be careful with what you share. Refrain from talking to people about the facts of your case. Speak only to your attorney - your communications are protected and private under attorney-client privilege.

Things to Know If You’re Facing Domestic Violence Charges

It is likely that a No Contact Order will be issued prohibiting the accused from contacting the alleged victim. When a No Contact Order is in place, contacting or attempting to contact the alleged victim will constitute a new criminal act which can come with harsh penalties.

Also, if you are convicted of DV, your right to possess a firearm will be lost. You will not be able to “expunge” such a conviction from your record.

The skilled attorneys at Padula & Associates, LLC know how important it is to defend your rights. Our attorneys are experienced in all aspects of Domestic Violence defense in Washington State. We know how to advocate for our clients and to pinpoint the weaknesses in the Prosecution’s case. For more than 20 years, Padula & Associates, LLC has been serving the people of King County, Snohomish County, and Washington State with aggressive and effective criminal defense.

We answer our phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us 24/7 at 425-883-3366, email us at, or fill out our online free consultation form today.