Is Lying About Domestic Violence A Crime?
False accusations of domestic violence can have devastating impacts on those accused. Once someone has been labeled as an ‘abuser,’ it can be hard to move forward. You may be wondering, are there any penalties in place for individuals who make false reports of domestic violence?
Let’s discuss what happens when someone lies about being the victim of domestic violence.
Domestic violence is one of the most serious criminal offenses. So much so that if the alleged victim later wants to drop charges, they can’t. Only the prosecution can decide whether or not to drop the charges. People know how seriously domestic violence accusations are taken and may make false accusations due to ulterior motives.
One of the biggest motivations for people to lie about domestic violence is child custody. During a custody battle or bitter divorce, one parent may lie about domestic violence to hurt the other parent’s chances of getting joint or full custody. The courts are extremely cautious about protecting the child’s best interests; if there is any possibility that one parent would be a danger to the child, it will severely affect their custody rights.
Another common reason for false allegations of domestic violence is revenge. If a relationship ends on bad terms, a scorned ex may falsely accuse the other partner of domestic violence. Their goal could be:
- To damage their reputation
- To deter others from wanting to date them
- To get attention and pity
The effects of the accusation on the partner, however, could include:
- Loss of family and/or friend relationships
- Loss of a job
- Jail time, fines, and other criminal penalties
- A criminal conviction on record
Criminal Charges for Lying
False accusations of domestic violence can ruin someone’s life. Under certain circumstances, lying about domestic violence is a crime. Perjury is when an individual lies under oath during an official investigation, either in a written or verbal statement. While individuals who lie about domestic violence may be charged with perjury, it is extremely rare. Additionally, the accuser could be charged with filing a false police report, a misdemeanor offense.
The individual who was falsely accused may file a civil lawsuit against the accuser to receive compensation for any damages caused by the allegation.
California Domestic Violence Defense
If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence, you need to act fast. While you know your innocence, it can be tough to prove this to a judge and jury. Our firm, Law Offices of Randy Collins, has helped numerous individuals facing domestic violence accusations have their cases dismissed. Call us today at (844) 285-9559 to get started with our top-tier domestic violence defense attorneys.