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What are New Jersey's domestic violence laws?

As in many states, New Jersey recognizes and provides protection from domestic abuse, be it physical, economic, sexual or emotional. What you might not know is that such abuse does not have to be actually applied but merely threatened for individuals to seek legal protection. The Prevention of Domestic Violence Act prohibits more than a dozen criminal offenses, including sexual assault, harassment, criminal trespass and stalking. Because of the severity with which New Jersey law treats domestic violence charges if you are accused of domestic violence, it is extremely important that you take legal action in your defense.

The penalties for being convicted of domestic violence vary depending on the charges, specifically whether the accusation is a misdemeanor or a felony. Additionally, repeat offenders will likely face more serious penalties for a crime than someone who is facing their first conviction. What is important to remember as the accused is that you are innocent until proven guilty, and you can take legal action in your defense.

Some ways in which you might defend yourself come from the requirements for an incident to be considered domestic violence. For a case to be domestic violence, a couple must be married, separated or divorced, or have lived together at some point; couples who have a child together or who have dated, also qualify. Additionally, both parties must be at least 18 years old unless the minor is emancipated.

Successfully proving that you have never had a relationship of any kind with your accuser is just one way in which you could prove your innocence in a domestic violence case. If you have been accused of domestic violence, consider meeting with an attorney to explore additional legal defense options.


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