Domestic Violence Lawyers

Don't let a criminal record ruin your life.

Penalties for Domestic Violence Crimes in California

California’s domestic violence laws carry serious consequences. Below are some of the worst case scenarios for someone arrested for a domestic violence crime. Given the seriousness of these consequences, it only makes sense to get the most experienced, aggressive, and competent criminal defense attorneys on your side as early as possible. Some of the most common consequences associated with domestic violence crimes include:

  • Deportation

    Many domestic violence crimes are “removable offenses,” meaning you can lose your current legal status in the United States or be deported.

  • Loss of Freedom

    Any domestic violence felony carries a punishment of up to one year in the county jail or up to three years in state prison. Further, most domestic violence charges are ineligible for alternative jail programs like electronic monitoring or “weekend work” programs.

  • Loss of Time

    All domestic violence charges carry a mandatory 52 week ‘Conflict & Accountability’ class as part of any probation.

  • Loss of Money

    Fines of up to $10,000 can also be ordered in some cases.

  • Loss of Career

    Charges of this type pose extreme risk to your career and financial livelihood.

  • Disruption of Household

    Unless you are prepared, most judges will order a mandatory “stay away” order at your first court appearance. This order is even made when the parties co-parent a child or live in the same house.

Why not start exploring your options?

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation
with one of our experienced domestic
violence attorneys.

70+ Years of Combined Experience.
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About VIB Law

When your freedom, your reputation and your career are on the line, you owe it to yourself and your family to have the best possible defense, and the most experienced lawyer defending you.

With over 50 years of combined criminal law experience, VIB Law is the largest and most successful criminal defense firm in Northern California. Our partners have consistently been recognized for excellence in their fields of practice. Partner Riccardo Ippolito won the “Top Lawyers In California” award presented by American Lawyer Media. Partner Patrick Valencia is a winner of the, “Juvenile Attorney of the Year” award presented by San Jose Magazine.

When the stakes are this high, why would you go with an “average” law firm?

Our Attorneys

Legal Defenses Against Domestic Violence Charges

At VIB Law, our domestic violence lawyers explore every potential defense for our clients. In fact, the first and most important step we take is to fully hear your side of the story. Some of the most common defenses we explore in domestic violence cases include:

False Allegations

People make false allegations of domestic violence all the time. This can be to obtain an advantage in family court, for example, to win custody proceedings if a divorce is pending. People also make false accusations of domestic assault as a form of revenge for some other issue in the relationship, for example, as payback for a discovery of cheating.

We’ll help you locate evidence for the possible motives for a false allegation of domestic violence. We can also help you do a complete background check of the other party to see if they have engaged in these types of false reports in the past. We can even help you locate witnesses who can show evidence of a false allegation so that it can be presented to the DA as part of your defense.


Police officers responding to domestic abuse calls often have to make a snap judgement as to who was the aggressor and who should be arrested. One of the most common things our clients report is that the arresting officer told them they “had to” make an arrest once they saw injuries on one of the parties.

With so much pressure to make an arrest, critical mistakes are often made. These mistakes are compounded when some of the parties involved don’t speak English as their first language. We also see instances where one of the parties withholds the whole story of what violence or injuries they themselves suffered in an attempt to “protect” their partner.

We’ll help you corroborate the fact that any force used was in self-defense by having you document any injuries you received via photographs and medical records and transferring this exculpatory information to the DA before charges are filed.

Accidental Injury

In the heat of an argument, people are often injured accidentally. We have seen several clients who were wrongly arrested for domestic violence by the police misinterpreting these accidental injuries as evidence of domestic battery.

We can meet with the complaining witness in these cases and provide evidence of how the injury really took place to the DA via a new statement. In some cases, because we are a multi-partner law firm, we can have one partner represent you and another partner represent your injured spouse.