Domestic assault, also known as domestic violence or spousal assault, is a serious offence and is handled differently by the Crown. Described as a non-consensual application of force between two people, the level of severity and subsequent penalty of an assault charge is dependent on the degree of injury and whether a weapon was involved. Domestic assault offences typically involve situations involving assault with spouses, common-law partners, boyfriend/girlfriend, and/or children. If injuries result, a person may be charged with “assault causing bodily harm” or “aggravated assault”.

The most common charges under an domestic assault offence:

  • Assault – Criminal Code section 265 or section 266 of the Criminal Code
  • Uttering Threats – Criminal Code section 264.1
  • Assault Causing Bodily Harm – Criminal Code section 267(b)
  • Assault with a Weapon – Criminal Code section 267(a)
  • Aggravated Assault – Criminal Code section 268

The Penalties

  • Criminal record
  • Up to 14 years jail time
  • Probation
  • Fine of up to $5000
  • Court ordered to have no contact with victim

Common Questions

They made this up! They exaggerated to the Police! It didn’t happen like that! What do I do?

Domestic assault is considered a serious offence in Alberta and Canada. A number of situations have turned deadly. For this reason, the police and prosecutors take these complaints very seriously. That said, many situations are overblown, exaggerated, or just plain made up. Talking to Mike will help you set the record straight.

I’m not allowed back in my house! What can I do?

In some situations, a lawyer can assist you to get back to your home. Once Mike knows the details of your case, he can tell you your options.

I have a bunch of conditions I must follow. Can I get them changed?

Every case is different. In some cases, conditions (like no contact with your spouse) can be dropped. However, make sure you follow your conditions exactly until they are changed in court. If you don’t, you may wind up in jail.

What will happen if I just go plead guilty?

You could get a jail sentence, probation, or a fine so it is strongly advised that you speak with a lawyer first. Any conviction will result in you having a Criminal Record, which can affect future employment and travel opportunities. The Criminal Code also states there will be a condition to have no contact with your spouse.