Almost any type of crime can be tagged with domestic violence if the abuse or violence is inflicted by a family member on another person living in the household. Many domestic violence charges involve incidents between spouses or intimate partners. Domestic violence is a serious problem, and what many people do not know is that a domestic violence conviction can cause long term problems, whether it is a misdemeanor or felony. If you are charged with a domestic violence offense, it is imperative that you hire an experienced criminal lawyer to represent you in court. A domestic violence conviction on your record can have the following repercussions:
Complete Loss of Gun Rights
In 1996, the U.S. Congress passed the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban which permanently bans a person who has a domestic violence conviction from owning, shipping, transporting, or using a gun or ammunition. It does not matter if you are convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony--once that conviction is on your criminal record, you will completely lose your gun rights.
Unable to Get Fingerprint Clearance
A wide variety of jobs, such as those in the government and medical sector, as well as positions that involve working with children, require a fingerprint clearance card. In many states, if you have a domestic violence conviction you will not be able to obtain a fingerprint clearance card. If you already work in a job that requires fingerprint clearance, your card can be revoked, and there is the possibility that you may be out of a job. If you are going to school for a career that requires fingerprint clearance, all of your time and hard work will be wasted if a domestic violence conviction is entered on your record.
Difficulty Renting Property
In the majority of cases, renting an apartment or house requires a criminal background check. You may be a completely normal person who made a major mistake in the heat of the moment, but unfortunately some landlords or apartment complexes may deny your rental application on the account of having a violent crime conviction on your record.
Finding a Job May Be Harder
Just like renting property, most employment opportunities require a candidate to pass a thorough background check. These background checks include your criminal record, so any potential employer will see your domestic violence conviction. In a competitive job market, you may lose a number of employment opportunities, as employers may opt to hire a similarly qualified individual who has not been convicted of any violent crimes.
If you are convicted of domestic violence, a criminal lawyer can work with you and the prosecution to reduce your charges, or possibly get them dropped completely.