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Domestic Cases

What is the punishment for a domestic assault and battery?


The penalties for a first offense domestic assault and battery ranges from a period of probation to a maximum of 2 ½ years in the house of correction.  In addition, the defendant is usually required to complete a certified batter’s intervention course.  This program typically meets once per week for 44 weeks.  The cost begins at $10 per session and may be assessed on a sliding scale. 

Can I get jail time for a domestic assault and battery? 

As with every case, it depends on the facts of the case and the defendant's record.  The maximum penalty for a domestic assault and battery is 2 ½ years in the house of correction.  If the defendant was charged with additional crimes then there may be additional penalties. 

If you were charged with this crime, do not talk about it to anyone other than your attorney.  Anything you say, text, message or post on social media will be twisted and used against you.  A skilled prosecutor can usually take even the most innocent sounding statement and use it against you at trial.  Do not talk to anyone other than your lawyer about your case.  Contact Lown Law Firm.

To be short and brief, in May of 2018 Zachary Lown helped me get my life back.


I was accused of domestic battery by a bitter ex-girlfriend. She lied on me, telling the police that I hit her. Zachary Lown is very sharp when it comes to knowing the law and taking care of business. Zachary got my case dismissed very quickly.

- Clarence, former client, from

Best Lawyer for Domestic Case

Attorney Zachary Lown

What is the legal definition of a domestic assault and battery?

The domestic assault and battery law in Massachusetts is also called Assault and Battery on a Family or Household Member.  It is spelled out in Chapter 265, Section 13M of the Massachusetts General Laws.  This law is often abbreviated as MGL ch. 265, § 13M or G.L. c. 265, § 13M.


If you were charged with this crime, the prosecutor must prove four things beyond a reasonable doubt.


First: That the defendant touched the person of [alleged victim], without having any right or excuse for doing so;


Second: That the defendant intended to touch [alleged victim];



Third: That the touching was either likely to cause bodily harm to [alleged victim] or was offensive and done without (his) (her) consent.


Fourth: that the alleged victim was a family or household member.


Under the law, two persons are “family or household members” if:

  • they are or were married to each other

  • they have a child in common

  • they are or have been in a “substantive dating relationship.”

Does my wife or girlfriend have to come to court? What if my wife or girlfriend doesn’t want to testify?


The alleged victim on a case has the right to attend the court date. If the defendant or any person acting on the defendant’s behalf tells the alleged victim that she shouldn’t go to court then the defendant can be charged with the felony crime of Witness Intimidation.

If the alleged victim does not want to go to court, he or she can, on their own, inform the defendant’s attorney or the district attorney’s office. Most DA’s will respect the alleged victim’s wishes, either because she and the Defendant have reconciled, entered counseling, or because the incident was not what it originally seemed to be.

Boston lawyer for domestic case

Attorney Zachary Lown                Principal Attorney

On the other hand, if the DA still wishes to pursue the matter and the alleged victim was served in hand with a summons or was told by a clerk in a courtroom that she must come back to court, then the DA has the option of asking a police officer to go to the alleged victim’s last address or workplace to bring her to court. One should seek a lawyer to navigate the pitfalls of this situation.

Can my wife assert a marital privilege? Can she be forced to testify against me?


If you have a valid marriage certificate then the judge can talk to the alleged victim inside of the courtroom and ask her if she is asserting her marital privilege on her own free will and that no one has forced her to do so.  If the alleged victim still wants to assert her marital privilege, she may elect to do so.  

What defense do I have in a domestic case?


There are a number of defenses available to you in this type of case.  Under both the United States Constitution and our state constitution, anyone charged with a crime is presumed to be innocent.  This means that you do not have to prove that you are innocent.  You are presumed to be innocent.  Instead, the prosecutor is the one who must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime.  To do this, the prosecutor must provide the jurors with an abiding conviction to a moral certainty that the defendant committed this crime.  Proof beyond a reasonable doubt is an extremely high standard.  It is the highest degree of certainty possible in matters relating to human affairs.

Attorney Zachary Lown will fight to get you the best possible result.  Attorney Lown will work to help you avoid any negative consequences, including on your employment, driver’s license or immigration status.   

Call Lown Law Firm for a free consultation. 

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Tel:  617-676-7339

Fax: 617-870-0500 

Address50 Congress Street, Suite 600, Boston, MA 02109

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