Domestic Violence Attorney in Northern California

My name is Mark Sollitt. I’ve been representing clients in Northern California for over twenty years. While I handle most criminal cases, domestic violence cases come with more than usual emotional distress for my clients. Even if the accusation is false, the feelings of mistrust and anger lead defendants to say or do things that cost them dearly in court. If you have been accused of domestic violence, or have been served with a restraining order, you need to contact me immediately. Fill out the form to the right, or call 1-800-420-5667. My toll free number is open 24/7 so I can best serve you. We can set up a consultation so we can review your case together and discuss your options. Strong emotions in these situations tend to make things worse very quickly. Call now, 1-800-420-5667, so I can start helping you.

Domestic Violence Laws in California

Domestic violence laws are a little more complicated than most criminal charges. You could be charged under more than one code depending on your circumstances. One of the most common charges is under California penal code 242, which states simply, “A battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.” A battery conviction will result in imprisonment up to six months and/or a fine of up to $2,000. If the victim is one of the following:

  • spouse or former spouse
  • cohabitant or former cohabitant in a home
  • a parent with whom the individual has a child
  • a partner in a dating relationship

then the defendant risks imprisonment of up to one year. If probation is granted, then one year of counseling will be required and, in place of a fine, payments to the victim and/or a battered women’s shelter may be required.

Restraining Orders

A restraining order or emergency protective order will usually be filed before any criminal charges. Once a restraining order is in place, criminal charges often follow. The best time to retain an attorney is as soon as a restraining order is filed. Some people violate restraining orders intending to talk things out and calmly solve the problem. Even with peaceful intentions, this puts defendants in a terrible position in court. The best thing to do is hire an attorney, do not communicate or go near your accuser. All communication at this point should be between attorneys.

Gender/Sex Bias in Domestic Violence Cases

Domestic violence isn’t always clear cut. Sometimes both people involved escalate the situation. Sometimes a woman initiates the violence then files charges against her victim. Popular opinion tends to side with women in domestic violence cases. Even if you have done nothing wrong, or if you were only defending yourself, you need an attorney. The same applies to people in homosexual relationships; the victim’s word is often taken at face value, leaving the defendant in a risky legal situation.

Hiring An Expert

When you find yourself served with a restraining order, or have domestic violence charges filed against you you need legal help. Contact my office, either call 1-800-420-5667 toll-free, day or night, or fill out the form to the right. I can personally provide a consultation and we can discuss how I can help you. I don’t delegate clients to junior partners, and I always treat every case with the seriousness that it deserves. Remember, time is of the essence, so call right now, 1-800-420-5667, or fill out the form on this page or my contact page. We’ll get you the legal help you need.