There’s a very dark side to families sometimes. People who are closest to each other sometimes engage in abusive behavior. Sometimes, people falsely accuse their family members of such actions. In cases of domestic violence, there is a criminal side, in which prosecutors charge those accused. But there is also a civil side, in which people make seek a Protection From Abuse Order.
Domestic Violence Victim Attorney in Chester County PA
At Ciccarelli Law Offices, our team of compassionate West Chester family lawyers can help you through this extraordinarily trying time for any civil matters stemming from domestic abuse. Our team effort puts all of our lawyers’ experience together to help both the victims of domestic violence and those accused deal with the legal proceedings surrounding a Protection From Abuse Order, child custody modifications, and other matters.
Call (610) 692-8700 or send an online message for a free consultation so we can act as soon as possible. We are based in West Chester PA and serve clients throughout Chester County, Lancaster County and suburban Philadelphia including West Chester, Kennett Square, Oxford, Avondale, Landenberg, West Grove, Paoli, Malvern, Downingtown, Coatesville, Exton, Parkesburg, Berwyn and Devon. We have convenient meeting locations in Lancaster, Philadelphia, Plymouth Meeting, Kennett Square, Malvern, Springfield, King of Prussia, and Radnor. Our family lawyers serve those with immediate legal needs in Chester County, Montgomery County, Delaware County and Lancaster County.
Defining Domestic Violence in Pennsylvania
When people think of domestic violence, they commonly think of domestic assault against a spouse. Domestic assault is intentionally, knowingly causing or attempting to cause bodily injury to another person in the perpetrator’s household, or putting the person in imminent fear of serious bodily injury. Domestic assault against a spouse is, indeed, a form of domestic violence.
However, under Pennsylvania law, domestic violence also includes a broad range of crimes committed against a member of the perpetrator’s family or household. The crimes include harassment, which is making physical contact, following a person in a public place or repeatedly communicating with the intent to harass; stalking, which is when a person repeatedly follows or communicates with a person in a manner that causes them reasonable fear of bodily injury or severe emotional distress; and false imprisonment, when a person unlawfully and knowingly restrains another against his or her will.
Sexual assault can also be a form of domestic violence, even between spouses. Though spouses may be expected to have a sexual relationship, both parties must consent to sexual contact.
Domestic violence doesn’t necessarily always happen between spouses. Child abuse, when a parent commits an act against his or her child, is also a form of domestic violence. Domestic violence can also occur by the child on the parent. To be domestic violence, the perpetrator and victim are spouses, are former spouses, are related by blood or marriage, had a child together, are current or former sexual partners, or reside together as family or have done so in the past.
Protection From Abuse Order in Chester County
For domestic violence cases, there is a criminal and a civil component. The Chester County district attorney prosecutes criminal cases, and the defendant can have a criminal defense attorney. However, if you’re the victim of domestic violence, or you have been accused of domestic violence, there can be Protection From Abuse Order to deal with. View more information on PFA Orders.
Legal Assistance for Domestic Abuse Victims in Pennsylvania
In the sensitive matters surrounding domestic violence, our West Chester lawyers at Ciccarelli Law Offices are always here for you. Whether your case involves a former husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, or other partners, our experience can help you when you need it most. Our firm passionately represents clients across Phoenixville, Coatesville, Paoli, Willow Street, Lititz, Ephrata, Lancaster, Villanova, Media, Newtown Square, Glen Mills, Ardmore, Greater Philadelphia, and surrounding communities. Call us today at (610) 692-8700 or send an online message for a free consultation.