Ohio Domestic Violence Laws
Created by FindLaw's team of legal writers and editors | Last reviewed March 26, 2018
Note: If you are in an emergency situation, call 911.
Domestic Violence in Ohio
In Ohio, victims of domestic violence are protected by both civil and criminal laws. Domestic violence can be physical, emotional, sexual, or financial. Certain types of harassment or emotional abuse can happen through different types of communication, including written, telephone, fax, e-mail, or voicemail.
Examples of Domestic Violence
What does domestic violence look like? It can be any act of physical violence or attempted physical violence against a family or household member, regardless of whether the victim suffers any visible injuries or requires any medical attention.
Examples include: kicking, choking, slapping, pushing, throwing physical objects at a person, pointing a weapon at a person, sexually assaulting a person, physically restraining a person, tearing a person’s clothing, or any other type of hitting or harmful touching.
Domestic Violence Penalties
A person convicted of domestic violence faces the following possible penalties. Additionally, if the offender knew the victim was pregnant, the court is required to impose a minimum sentence between six (6) months to a year in jail.
- 1st degree misdemeanor: Maximum of six months in jail and/or a fine up to $1000
- 2nd degree misdemeanor: Maximum of 90 days in jail and/or fine up to $750
- 3rd degree misdemeanor: Maximum of 60 days in jail and/or a fine up to $500
- 5th degree felony: Six to 12 months in prison and a fine up to $2500
- 4th degree felony: Six to 18 months in prison and a fine up to $5000
- 3rd degree felony: Nine months to three years in prison and a fine up to $10,000
What Protections Are Available in Addition to Criminal Prosecution?
There are several remedies and legal protections available for victims of domestic violence in Ohio. These may include:
- Protective Orders: Victims of domestic violence can apply for a temporary restraining order, a court order signed by a judge that offers protection to victims.
- Civil lawsuit: The victim may file a civil lawsuit to recover losses and expenses such as medical bills or pain and suffering damages
- Custody/child or spousal support orders: These may be modified to prevent any further incidence of violence between spouses, children, or other persons
|Code Sections||Ohio Revised Code Section 2919.25|
|What Protections are Available?||
Civil and criminal
|What is Prohibited?||
|Family/Household Member Relationship Requirement||
A person who is residing or has resided with the offender and any of the following:
|Definition of "Person Living as a Spouse"||
*Factors such as prior offenses or history of domestic violence help determine the severity of the punishment. Sentence may also include a restraining or protective order.
Physical violence or attempted physical violence: first conviction is a first degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail and/or a $1,000 fine. Penalties go up from there include possible prison time for a felony conviction.
Threatening to use physical force: first conviction is a second degree misdemeanor punishable by 30 days in jail and/or a $250 fine. Penalties go up from there include possible prison time for a felony conviction.
|Types of Protective Orders Available||
Criminal Protective Order: Temporary Protective Order (TPO)
Civil Protective Order: Civil Protective Order (CPO)
- Ohio Attorney General
- Ohio Domestic Violence Network: (ODVN), 1-800-934-9840
- National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
Facing Domestic Violence Charges? You'll Want Legal Representation
Because domestic laws can sometimes get complicated, it is a good idea to consult an experienced Ohio domestic violence lawyer if you have questions about your specific situation. If you're facing charges, a skilled lawyer can explain the law and how it may apply in your case. Start now by contacting an Ohio criminal defense lawyer near you.
You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.
Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney
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