Family disagreements can be complicated. On the one hand, you feel comfortable enough with your family to show your true self; on the other hand, a tense family member can feel more threatening than a stranger.
Regardless of the time of year, tensions can get high, and emotions can boil over. In some cases, the moment can feel so intense that someone in the family files assault charges.
Here’s what you should know about dealing with assault charges after a family disagreement.
You need more help than you think
You should not deal with assault charges on your own. An assault charge could impact your job, your family and your other activities.
While you may feel the need to share your side of the story, you should be cautious about whom you tell. An experienced attorney can help you understand the process of dealing with assault charges and advocate for you.
What constitutes assault in Florida?
Pop culture and media can make it difficult to understand the elements that make up an assault charge. Often, you will hear assault in conjunction with battery. The two terms tend to be used together so often that they seem to have the same meaning.
Some states have different definitions of assault, but in Florida, assault is “an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.”
It is important to remember that there does not need to be contact for there to be an assault, merely the threat of imminent violence. Understanding assault and the defenses you may have available is complex, so it is essential to have an experienced advocate supporting your case.