The state of Michigan defines domestic violence as:
“A pattern of learned behavior in which one person uses physical, sexual, and emotional abuse to control another person against a household or family member.”
Unlike assault and battery cases, domestic violence cases involve those with special, abusive relationships.
What are the special relationships defined in domestic abuse cases?
Under Michigan law, domestic violence is an assault or assault and battery by an abusive partner such as a:
- spouse or former spouse (sometimes called “intimate partner violence”)
- person residing or having resided in the same household as the victim
- person having a child in common with the victim
- person with whom he/she has or has had a dating relationship
What is domestic violence?
According to the Michigan State Police, domestic violence can consist of the following abusive behaviors:
Physical Violence/Physical Abuse
- Pushed, shoved or kicked
- Slapped or bitten
- Hit or punched
- Locked out of your home
- Denied help when ill, injured or pregnant
- Weapon used against you
- By physical force, not being allowed to leave
- Objects thrown at you
- Abandoned in a dangerous situation
Emotional & Psychological Abuse
- Threatened harm to you, your family or your pets
- Beliefs, race, heritage, class, religion, or sexual orientation ridiculed
- Manipulated with lies and contradictions, controlling behavior
- Being convinced you are to blame for the abuse
- Forced to have sex or watch sexual acts
- Forced to perform sexual acts or have sexual acts performed on you
- Forced to dress more sexually than you wish
- Forced to have sex after a physical assault, when you are ill or as a condition of the relationship
Statute of limitations for domestic violence cases in Michigan
In Michigan, there is a criminal statute of limitations on domestic violence cases. Since most first-time domestic violence offenses are misdemeanors, the statute of limitations expires 6 years after an offense is committed.
However, an indictment may be filed within 10 years after an offense on a minor is committed. It can also be filed by the alleged victim’s 21st birthday (whichever is later) for the following crimes:
- Child abuse
- Sex offenses such as criminal sexual conduct (750.520c, 750.520d and 750.520e) and assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct
What protections are available for victims?
The alleged victim can file for the following legal protections against the accused, such as:
- Domestic Relationship Personal Protection Order (PPO)
- Nondomestic Stalking PPO
While having a PPO against you is not a criminal charge on its own and does not show up on your criminal record, it can affect your freedom in numerous ways. Learn more about the different types of PPOs and violations here.
How does Michigan law classify domestic violence?
Although other states have various degrees of domestic violence, Michigan is not one of them. Michigan uses two classifications; domestic assault and aggravated domestic assault. Learn more about each charge and the correlating penalties here.
Hiring a Domestic Violence Attorney
Domestic violence is a very serious charge to face. Your career, home, livelihood and more is at risk during this type of criminal proceeding. That’s why it is extremely important to hire a criminal defense attorney who specializes in domestic violence cases. If you do not, your future is most certainly on the line.
Contact our team today at (248) 541 – 2600 for a free consultation and case evaluation.
If this is an emergency, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or 911.
Sydney Fairman is the Social Media Marketing Specialist for the Law Offices of Barton Morris and Cannabis Legal Group. While at Central Michigan University, Sydney was an active member of Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority and held various internships, leadership and part-time positions. These places of employment include the City of Mt. Pleasant, Grand Central Magazine, Mackinac State Historic Parks and WCMU Public Media (PBS). She graduated in May 2018 with a Bachelors Degree in Applied Arts in Integrative Public Relations and minor in Journalism. Sydney comes to us after her first position post-college with Gale, a Cengage Company as a Marketing Associate. She possesses a passion for writing, marketing and graphic design and showcases this on the Law Offices of Barton Morris’ website/social media channels, as well as Cannabis Legal Group’s website/social media channels.