Domestic violence is one top health concern in the USA; people lack a proper understanding of domestic violence and suffer not knowing the remedy against the abusers. Many victims of Domestic Violence convince themselves that the situation will improve and do not take the necessary steps to protect themselves. However, the situation may intensify and result in rape, assault, and even murder. In this article, you will learn the necessary information and legal remedies available for the intimate partners or other cohabitants affected by Domestic Violence or Spousal Abuse.
Definition of Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is multiple forms of violence by a person to gain or maintain power and control within a domestic or intimate relationship. It describes the violence used between the intimate partners, siblings, against a child, by a child against his/her parent or other cohabitants. The violence may be physical, sexual, emotional or psychological abuse, economic deprivation, threats, intimidation, stalking, etc.
federal laws have been enacted making domestic violence crime, including the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). However, most of the violations of domestic violence are prosecuted under state law. A conviction for domestic violence in each state of the USA requires that the defendant’s behavior and relationship with the victim should meet certain standards. Laws describing these aspects of crime differ from state to state.
Intimate partner violence
Domestic violence also called intimate partner violence takes place between people in an intimate relationship. Victimization is beyond the gender boundary or sexual orientation. Mostly, women are the victims of domestic violence in marriage and suffer injuries more likely than men. Although, men also are victims including physical partner violence. LGBT couples are also subject to it.
What are the 5 types of abuses in Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence in marriage does not only mean causing physical harm to your intimate partner. This is one form of Violence. Domestic violence in marriage may be usually categorized into five types such as physical abuse, emotional abuse, psychological abuse or sexual abuse. Another least common type of abuse is financial abuse.
- Physical Abuse
Physical abuse is the most common type of recognized domestic violence in marriage which involves physical force against the victim like slapping, kicking, punching stabbing, shooting, etc. by the offender. The injury caused by such physical abuse need not be a major one, minimal injury is also considered as Domestic violence.
- Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse involves insult, humiliation and or criticism. However, it is difficult for many people to understand. Emotional abuse must be continuous and persistent and significant and must involve other forms of abuse to make it actionable.
- Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse is one of the most common types of domestic violence which includes rape, sexual assault, harassment, and many other related behaviors.
- Psychological Abuse
Psychological abuse involves threatening, frightening, not allowed to talk to people, not allowing to leave the house, emotional blackmail or fear-causing behavior. However, psychological abuse alone or a one-time event will not be enough to make domestic violence actionable. Such behavior must be significant, severe and continuous.
- Financial Abuse
Financial abuse is the least obvious form of domestic violence in marriage such as a husband preventing his wife from education, a job outside the home. The victim may be completely dependent on their abusive partner for money. The perpetrator may withhold money for food, clothing, and other basic needs.
What are the various forms of domestic violence?
The situations of Domestic violence in marriage which begin with occasional violence, threat or aggressive behavior can intensify and result in a physical injury, rape, murder or even murder.
Domestic violence in marriage is one of the leading causes of injury for women when compared to men.
One in five women experience a rape attempt or complete rape by her partner while one in seventy-one for men.
More women are murdered by their partner every year in the USA than men. The ten states with the highest rate of women murdered by men were, as of 2010, Texas, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Louisiana, Virginia, Hawaii, Nevada, Arizona, Georgia. In 2009, homicides in which the victim and offender relationship could be identified, 93% of women victims were killed by a man they knew, 63% were killed by their intimate partner.
The level of dating violence like rape, stalking or aggression experienced by school girls and college women experience dating violence is very high than men.
According to a survey, 1 in 6 women, 1 in 19 men Additionally, 1 in 3 bisexual women and 1 in 6 heterosexual women have been stalked during their lifetime.
Domestic violence in California
In California, Domestic violence may be either a felony or a misdemeanor offense depending upon the circumstances of each case.
If the injury caused by the offender is a minor one, then he may be charged for a misdemeanor offense under California penal code Sec 243(e)(1). But, if the injury serious causing great bodily injury as defined by California state law, then he may be charged for a felony offense, corporal injury to an intimate partner or other cohabitants under California penal code Sec 273.5.
What percent of marriages have domestic violence in the U.S.?
Domestic violence in marriage is a common issue in American families. It is estimated that over ten million people are victims of domestic violence in the United States each year. Almost, 25 % of marriages and intimate partnerships, couples hit or assault each other. Domestic violence incidents between 960,000 and 3,000,000 are reported every year, while many other incidents go unreported.
The percentage of male offenders is more than women. It is more common in young couples and can intensify without intervention. It may include physical, sexual or Emotional abuse like threats, humiliating remarks, coercion, jealousy, dominating and controlling behavior. Controlling behavior is also known as intimate terrorism. Aggression is another type of domestic violence in the marriage that may take place due to disagreement and can intensify into physical abuse like slapping, pushing by husband or wife leading to injuries or criminal charges.
How many wives kill their husbands each year in the USA?
According to National Domestic Violence Hotline, over 12 million men and women are victims of domestic violence in marriage each year in the U.S. The killing of a husband by his wife is called mariticide and killing of a wife by her husband is called uxoricide In the USA, women are more likely murdered by their intimate partner than men. The number of females killed by their partner is about three quarters and a quarter are male, in the year 2007, 2340 deaths occurred as a result of domestic violence 70% of it were females and 30% males.
What physical abuse does to a woman?
Domestic violence not only affects the woman but also their children and families. This may include short-term, long-term physical or mental effects on the victim’s life. The effects of domestic abuse on a woman include minor as well as serious injuries as follows:
- injury to organs or any other Internal injuries
- Chronic pain
- Migraine headaches
- Digestive problems
- Heart problems
- Problems with the immune system
- Drugs and alcohol addiction
- Behavior issues
- Risky sexual behavior
- Eating disorders
- Suicidal thoughts and/or attempts, etc.
A woman may also suffer physical effects of sexual violence as follows:
- Nightmares or trouble sleeping
- Pelvic pain
- Vaginal bleeding
- Sexually transmitted infections and diseases
- Unwanted pregnancy
- Miscarriage, etc.
Do most domestic violence cases go to trial?
No, most of the domestic violence cases do not go to trial. Many people lack the meaning of Domestic violence and the situations can create feelings of helplessness to the victim, it is most important for the victim to understand and identify the different signs of abuse to get legal help.
Legal Remedies for domestic violence
Domestic violence is prohibited by criminal statutes in each state of USA. A domestic violence victim must contact the police immediately and ensure his/her personal safety and cooperate in the criminal prosecution of the abuser. Tort law allows a domestic violence victim to sue the abuser in the civil court and recover damages for the injury caused. A victim can also file for restraining orders for their protection from further abuse. Restraining orders forbid the abuser to come within a specified space of the victim and cease all contacts. The court may also order the offender to surrender firearms, undergo counselling, leave the home, etc.
How a Domestic Law attorney can help?
Domestic violence can have a significant impact on the lives of the victim who has suffered and also on the accused. You should hire an experienced Domestic Law Lawyer to get legal help. A Domestic violence case can be resolved in the following two ways.
- The defendant can either fight against the allegations of Domestic Violence by going to trial, or
- The defendant may enter a guilty or no contest plea in exchange for lenient punishments or penalties.
If the facts of the case are against you the Domestic law lawyer can make a plea bargain. However, if the facts in the case are in your favour your case will be for trial.
Help for Domestic Violence
In an emergency, domestic violence victim can call 911 or contact state or law enforcement officials. You must hire an experienced family law or criminal law attorney who can assist you who can help you with everything from the police to file a protective or a civil suit for the Domestic violence abuse.