Domestic Violence: Facts and Questions
What Is The Punishment For Assault On A Family Member In Texas?
Texas does not have stand-alone domestic violence laws. Instead, domestic violence is called an assault on a family member in Texas. There are three different types of crimes within the category of assault on a family member—domestic assault, aggravated domestic assault, and continuous violence against the family. Domestic assault involves a defendant threatening a family member, spouse, or partner with a bodily injury. It also includes causing a bodily injury or causing physical contact that is provocative or offensive. Aggravated domestic assault happens when the defendant uses a weapon to assault the victim or cause a serious bodily injury. The term “weapon” is defined broadly and includes anything from a firearm to a baseball bat. When the victim suffers serious bodily harm, prosecutors can file aggravated assault as a first-degree felony charge. Otherwise, it is a second-degree felony. Finally, continuous violence against the family is a third-degree felony. Defendants who commit two domestic assaults within a year can receive a conviction for this crime in Texas.
How Long Does A Domestic Violence Charge Stay On Your Record In Texas?
What Constitutes A Domestic Disturbance In Texas?
Can You Expunge Domestic Violence Convictions In Texas?
As mentioned above, a domestic violence conviction typically will not be eligible for expungement from your record. However, some criminal convictions can be sealed when a court issues an order of non-disclosure. When the court issues an order of non-disclosure, government entities such as law enforcement offices and courts cannot disclose your criminal record to other people or government agencies. Unfortunately, Texas Courts do not issue orders of non-disclosure for family violence offenses. You may be able to successfully ask the court to expunge your domestic violence charge if you have not been found guilty, your case was never filed after an arrest, or the court dismissed your case. Another option is to pursue an appeal of your case and request the court to overturn your conviction.