Domestic Violence

Michigan’s domestic assault law applies to assaults committed against persons who are or were in certain relationships with the defendant. Defendants who have previously been convicted of violent domestic crimes face the possibility of more severe fines and lengthier jail sentences. Michigan law also provides a system where domestic violence victims can obtain personal protection orders from a court.

Domestic Assault & Penalties

A person commits domestic assault by assaulting a current or former spouse, an individual with whom the person is or was in a dating relationship, an individual with whom the person has a child, or a current or former resident of the person’s household. Domestic assault and domestic assault and battery are misdemeanors punishable by up to 93 days in jail and a $500 fine, if the person has no prior convictions for domestic violence crimes. If the assault involves neither a weapon nor the intent to murder but causes serious or aggravated injury, the person is subject to up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

If the person convicted of domestic assault or domestic assault and battery has a prior conviction for committing any of the following offenses against a current or former dating partner, current or former spouse, current or former household resident, or a co-parent, the new conviction may be punished by up to one year in prison or a $1,000 fine, or both:

  • assault
  • assault and battery
  • felonious assault
  • assault with intent to commit murder, maim, or do great bodily harm, or
  • a conviction for violating a law in another state that is substantially similar to any of the preceding crimes.

If the defendant has two or more such prior convictions, the new domestic assault or domestic assault and battery conviction may result in a prison sentence of up to two years in prison, a $2,500 fine, or both.

(Mich. Comp. Laws § § 750.81, 750.81a)


Domestic Assault

  • The Law: MCL 750.81(2)
  • Penalty: 93 days in Jail and/or $500.00 fine, or both

Second Offense

  • The Law: MCL 750.81(3)
  • Penalty: 1 year in Jail and/or $1,000.00 fine, or both

Aggravated Domestic Assault

  • The Law: MCL 750.81a(2)
  • Penalty: 1 year in Jail and/or $1,000.00 fine, or both

Third Offense - Felony

  • The Law: MCL 750.81(4)
  • Penalty: 5 years in Prison and/or $5,000.00 fine, or both


Frequently, there are no independent witnesses to an alleged act of domestic violence, nor is there any tangible proof of any injury. Many times it is a case of “she said, he said” and false accusations are regularly made to try and gain leverage in a divorce or child custody situation or even as a result of a break-up. We at the West Michigan Defense Team handle these cases with regularity and have been very successful in getting obtaining positive results for our clients.

If you have been accused of domestic violence, you owe it to yourself to contact the West Michigan Defense Team to see what your best options are.

When your freedom, job & family is on the line-
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West Michigan Defense Team
77 Monroe Center St NW, Ste 700
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 456-5457




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