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Learning more about domestic violence

Residents of Nevada may benefit from learning more about how domestic violence is legally defined and dealt with. This knowledge may help some people avoid legal trouble, while helping others protect their right to live a safe and secure existence. Domestic violence can be described as discord between two individuals in a household that escalates beyond the scope of a reasonable relationship. The violence may include physical, psychological or mental abuse, as well as making threats.

The violence may also be described as any behavior intended to subjugate or control another person through means of assault or humiliation. Statistics indicate that between one and four million women experience some degree of domestic violence every year in the U.S. Approximately 33 percent of all women experience domestic violence during their adulthood. However, many of these victims may be able to escape the violence by obtaining a protective order from a local court.

Statistics showed that 65 percent of the people who received protective orders reported no further incidents when they were polled six months later. A temporary restraining order can prohibit an abuser from encroaching within a designated distance of a victim's home, work or school. These court orders can also prevent the abuser from contacting or attempting to harass the victim. Medical records or photographs typically suffice as credible evidence of abusive behavior.

People who need help resolving a domestic violence situation typically benefit from legal representation. Lawyers often help assess the available options that can ensure protection for the victim and any children that may be involved. Legal counsel may also be able to help married victims offset any resulting damages by petitioning for support payments through the divorce process.

Source: Divorce Support, "Domestic Violence", September 15, 2014

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