In many sectors, domestic violence charges are grounds for termination and suspending or revoking certain professional licenses. The long-term impacts that such a charge could have on your life beyond the immediate penalties, such as the revocation of your second amendment rights and issuing of restraining orders, could take away many current and future employment opportunities. So, it is critical to retain experienced legal representation to fight against a severe and even false domestic violence accusation. Keep reading to learn more about the long-term impacts of domestic violence charges and why you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Immediate Penalties for Domestic Violence Convictions
Domestic violence convictions ruled as misdemeanors carry the following sentencing:
- Class A misdemeanor: up to 11 months, 29 days and/or a maximum fine of $2,500.
- Class B Misdemeanor: no more than 6 months in jail and a $500 fine.
A second conviction can be punishable by a fine of $350 to $3,500 and 30 days to 11 months and 29 days in jail. A third or subsequent conviction can be punishable by $1,100 to $5,000 in fines and 90 days to 11 months and 29 days in jail.
In addition to these penalties, a person convicted of domestic assault can also face a fine of up to $200 that goes to the Tennessee general fund for family violence shelters and services.
Long-Term Repercussions of Domestic Violence Charges
Difficulty Seeking Employment
If you are seeking employment, a domestic violence charge might have long-lasting consequences on your ability to secure a job. Most employers conduct a background check on potential candidates, and a domestic violence conviction on your criminal record will likely dissuade an employer from offering you the job, since many companies do not want to risk employing someone who might be associated with violent tendencies. No matter how qualified you may be, you might be dropped for another candidate with equal or lesser abilities but a clear record.
Specific Job Types You Might Be Barred From
A domestic violence conviction can also prevent you from legally holding specific types of jobs moving forward. Many fields require workers to meet a high level of responsibility and moral and ethical judgment. Any deviation from these standards can make you a risk and a liability. For example, if you work in education, you are expected to be a good example for the students. Similarly, if you work in social services, you will need to be a trustworthy figure, but a domestic violence conviction on your record will work against you here. In fact, some of the people you might be working with could even include victims of domestic violence.
You might also be barred from working in health care, as a health care representative will be expected to always look out for the well-being of their patients. Even in service industries, employers need to be able to trust that you will treat people right. A domestic violence conviction can work against all these expectations, as its mark on your criminal record might suggest violent or unethical tendencies.
Whatever field of work you are interested in pursuing, a domestic violence conviction is the strongest mark against your candidacy. This is why it is extremely important to seek legal representation if you are facing a false allegation, because the consequences could follow you for the rest of your life.
Sex Offender Registration Requirement
If your domestic violence charge includes sexual assault charges, depending on your situation you might be required to register as a sex offender, and failure to do so is considered another criminal offense. The public has access, however, to the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Sex Offender Public Website, which makes certain information about you publicly available, including:
- Name and aliases
- Current address
The website may also provide your physical description (height, weight, etc.), date of birth, additional information about the offense including statutes violated, and date of offense. The availability of this information to the public means your employer may find this information during your background check and decide against hiring you or retaining your employment.
Loss of 2nd Amendment Rights
If your alleged domestic violence charge includes the use of firearms, you will likely risk losing your second amendment right to firearms possession. Anyone convicted of a domestic violence offense with a weapon is prohibited from owning, possessing, or purchasing a firearm or ammunition. Whether the conviction was a misdemeanor or a felony, any type of conviction will revoke the accused’s gun rights.
Losing firearm rights might be especially problematic if you are employed in a profession that requires the use of firearms, such as police officers, military personnel, and security personnel. If you are banned from handling or possessing a gun as your job requires, you will likely lose your job and have to seek employment in a completely different field.
Facing False Domestic Violence Charges?
If you are facing domestic violence charges, the penalties could go beyond immediate fines and jail time; a conviction could severely impact the rest of your life. While everyone deserves a second chance, having a domestic violence mark on your criminal record will impact your current and future employment opportunities. As a result, it is critical that you seek legal guidance in your domestic violence case, as you want to fight the charge as best you can, especially if it is a false allegation. The defense lawyers at Eldridge & Blakney can assess the facts of your case and craft a compelling defense to work for the justice – and the second chance –you deserve.