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Protecting Your Rights And Best Interests

In Divorce And Other Family Law Matters

Information About Orders Of Protection

When you are threatened with violence, the first crucial action you must take to protect yourself is to call 911 and inform law enforcement of the incident that occurred and the injuries you may have sustained. Seeking immediate intervention will help you avoid future violence and harm. Law enforcement will take action to protect you and will file a domestic incident report, which may be obtained from the precinct that responded to your call. If a spouse or other domestic partner has injured you or your children in a violent physical attack, do not hesitate to obtain medical attention, as doing so may be vital to proving your future allegations. Ensuring that you have photographs of any injuries you sustained is also vital.

You may proceed with your case against your spouse in district or criminal court or family court. If the allegations reach the threshold of criminal activity, a detective will investigate the matter to determine whether the district attorney should be prosecuting the case as a criminal matter. A Nassau County divorce lawyer from the law offices of Jane K. Cristal, P.C., will assist you in understanding the process, pursuing your rights under the law and obtaining an order of protection quickly.

Protect Yourself And Your Children With An Order Of Protection

When threats have been made against you, seek help immediately. Call Nassau County lawyer Jane K. Cristal, a lawyer with whom you will feel comfortable discussing the details of the incident. You will learn your options and be on your way to securing a better life for yourself and children. For example, you may decide to file a petition in family court after you have reviewed the process with your attorney at Jane K. Cristal, P.C., including all the details of the threats or actual injuries suffered, to justify being awarded an order of protection by the court. Judges are inclined to issue such an order at once. The court will not want to take risks with regard to the future safety of those who are threatened with or have suffered from domestic violence. In cases in which criminal charges are filed against the abuser, you will not necessarily need legal counsel.

Whether the matter should proceed in family court or criminal court may be decided between you and your attorney. Where the allegations are egregious, the district attorney (DA) will generally proceed with the matter in district or criminal court. It is also noteworthy that the burden of proof is higher in criminal court than in a civil court (family court). That means that in criminal court the complaining party must be able to prove their allegations beyond a reasonable doubt in order for the defendant to be found guilty. Whereas in family court, the petitioner will have to prove his or her case by the preponderance of the evidence; this is a lower burden of proof, that is, it is easier to prove. Sometimes, despite the violence perpetrated by one spouse against the other, they ultimately decide to reconcile.

If the matter is pending in criminal court, when the spouses reconcile or determine that they do not wish to proceed with the domestic violence case, the complainant may not be permitted to withdraw the accusation as such a determination will be made by the DA. The DA often proceeds with the criminal case against the accused individual even though it may be against the wishes of the alleged victim. This policy evolved because it is believed that this helps avoid the problem of undue pressure being brought against the victim by the abuser to withdraw the charges. However, in family court, if there is reconciliation, the petitioner is free to withdraw the petition against the other. The couple then enters counseling to explore methods to achieve reconciliation. If you are experiencing difficulties in your marriage, you are well-advised to consult counsel, learn your rights and strategize the best way to proceed as soon as possible.

Contact a lawyer at Jane K. Cristal, P.C., if you are in danger. We serve clients throughout Nassau County, as well as Long Island, New York.