In the United States, October is the National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. As part of our own mission to help families in crisis, the Law Office of Erika A. Williams is publishing this 4-part series on domestic violence to shed light on all forms of domestic violence; the ways that it shows up in families' lives; and, what you can do to keep yourself, your family, and your loved ones safe.
In the last post, we talked about the incidence of domestic violence in the United States. For this second part of the series, I really wanted to give you some of the laws covering domestic violence. Any case that is filed related to domestic violence must, first, be rooted in the law. The law defines what domestic violence is and what both the punishment is for the perpetrator and the remedy is for the victim.
In California, domestic violence is described in both the penal code and the family code. The penal code provides criminal penalties for the conduct described; while the family code provides for civil penalties and relief.