California Domestic Violence: What You Need to Know Part I

By: Wallin & Klarich

Why You Need an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney

There are three ways someone can be prosecuted for domestic violence under California’s domestic violence laws. First, there is Penal Code § 243(e)(1), which is simple domestic battery. Second, there is Penal Code § 273.5, which is defined as willful infliction of corporal injury. Finally, there is Penal Code § 243(d), which is aggravated battery. In addition, if the type of violence doesn’t qualify as “domestic violence,” it can also fit into Penal Code § 242, which is simple battery. Below is a brief description of these differences.

California Penal Code § 243(e)(1), or “simple domestic battery,” is the misdemeanor charge and, therefore, the least serious of these three domestic violence offenses. To be convicted of this offense, all you have to do is intentionally “touch” your “intimate partner” in an offensive or angry manner. That’s it. He/she doesn’t even have to be injured, only offended. Penal Code § 243(e)(1) also has a broad definition of “intimate partners.” Under this definition, your “intimate partner” includes your fiancé or fiancée, your current or former spouse, someone with whom you live or have lived, anyone you are or were dating, or the parent of your child.

More information on the remaining elements of domestic violence charges in California will continue in an additional article.

If you, or a loved one, are facing domestic violence charges, please call Wallin & Klarich, so one of our experienced Orange County criminal defense attorneys can assist you in your time of need. Wallin & Klarich has over 30 years of experience in domestic violence cases, and are here to help you. Call 1-888-280-6839, or visit us online at, to speak to one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys.

Posted In: Assault & Battery