New Jersey Expands Definition of Domestic Violence So More Victims Can Obtain Help

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Mar 07, 2024 | 0 Comments

Everyone deserves to be happy and live their life in a safe environment. But for victims of domestic violence, this is not the case. There are people who constantly live in fear of physical and emotional violence perpetrated by those closest to them, usually spouses and intimate partners. Fortunately, New Jersey has passed a new law expanding the definition of domestic abuse so the state and the judicial system can help more people escape from an abusive relationship. 

If you or a family member are in New Jersey and struggling with domestic violence, stalking, or harassment, do not be afraid to seek assistance. The Lento Law Firm and its Family Law Team are ready to help you. The team knows what to do and has a wide range of experience obtaining restraining orders for victims of domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, and related offenses. You need a compassionate, understanding legal advocate to guide you, and the Lento Law Firm can supply that advocate. Get in touch with us at 888-535-3686 or use this online form to contact us. 

New Jersey Says Domestic Abuse Includes Coercive Control 

According to a news article, New Jersey's Governor Phil Murphy has signed a new law broadening the state's definition of domestic violence. The definition now includes coercive control, which is a pattern of behavior intended to unreasonably interfere with someone's free will and personal liberty. Examples of coercive control include isolating an individual from friends, relatives, or other support sources, and depriving someone of basic necessities. The law also says controlling or monitoring a person's movements, communications, daily behavior, finances, or access to services constitutes coercive control. 

In addition, when an abuser frequently calls a victim by insulting names and demeans and degrades them, that behavior is considered to be prohibited coercive control. The definition also covers threats to injure or kill a person's relative or pet and threats to make baseless reports to the police or child protection agencies, the news report said. 

With this new definition, New Jersey has made it easier for victims of domestic violence to obtain relief. Under the new law, the courts have to consider patterns of coercive control when determining whether to issue a restraining order in a domestic violence case. Previously, some victims had difficulty when seeking a restraining order because the harassing behavior they were experiencing was not listed as a form of domestic abuse under the law, according to the news article. 

If You Are Experiencing Domestic Violence, You Need Skilled and Knowledgeable Legal Representation 

If you or a loved one are in New Jersey and suffering as a result of abuse from a spouse, intimate partner, or other individual, the Lento Law Firm and its Family Law Team can help. It's always a good idea to seek guidance from a law firm that has experience helping victims of abuse. The attorneys at the Lento Law Firm have the skills and knowledge you need to break free from an abuser and live your life in safety. Tell us about your case by calling 888-535-3686 or contact us through this online form

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento is a veteran of one of the nation's busiest family courts with nearly 20 years' experience passionately helping families. By day, he worked in the trenches of family court, and at night, he studied the law. He helped countless families while working at family court, and he went on to become an attorney, dedicating his law practice to continuing the work he started years earlier. Mr. Lento's experience both behind the scenes and on the front lines allows him to understand a client's family law matter from all angles, and allows him to find and employ the most effective strategies to get favorable outcomes for any client. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in New Jersey and New York, and is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide. In the courtroom and in life, attorney Joseph D. Lento stands up when the bell rings! He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and protects their interests.


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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has more than a decade of experience practicing Family Law in New Jersey. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you and your family, contact our offices today. Family Law Attorney Joseph Lento will go above and beyond the needs for any client and fight for what is fair.

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