Legal Guidance For Criminal Charges
At JCA Law, we offer legal defence strategies for clients throughout Toronto who have been charged with criminal offences under the Criminal Code of Canada.
We specifically provide guidance and support for summary conviction offences. This is a type of offence where, if convicted, the consequences are less severe than more serious criminal offences.
What is family violence?
Family Violence is an abusive behavior to control or harm a member of their family or someone whom they have a closer relationship.
It includes many aspects of physical and emotional abuse, as well as neglect acted by family members or partners. It may be a single act of violence or a number of acts that constitute a pattern of abusive behaviors. Family violence could have serious and fatal consequences for victims or those who see/hear the violence, especially children.
Although the Criminal Code doesn’t refer to specific “family violence offenses”. But there are many criminal code offenses could be used to charge someone with acts of family violence.
Forms of violence or abuse
Family violence is not just physical violence. A person can be the victim of one or more forms of violence or abuse including:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Financial abuse
The different forms of abuse can also occur in a range of relationships and contexts. Some examples of various types of family violence are intimate partner violence, child abuse, and neglect, elder abuse, violence based on so-called “honor” and forced marriage.
Physical abuse like assault is the intentional use of force against a person. It could cause physical pain or injury.
This kind of abuse includes:
- hitting, slapping or kicking
- pushing or shoving
- pinching or punching
- throwing objects at someone
- holding someone down for someone else to cause harm or pain
- locking someone in a room
- lying them down
- strangling or choking
- stabbing or cutting
- killing someone
The above-mentioned are crimes in Canada.
Sexual abuse of an adult involves:
- sexual activity or touching without consent
- continued sexual contact even they were ask to stop it
- forcing someone to commit unsafe or humiliating acts
Sexual contact with anyone without consent is a crime. It includes touching or forcing sexual activity on your partner or dating partner. Even your married, you cannot force your spouse to have a sexual activity.
Also, there are some laws protecting children from sexual abuses that prone to exploitation.
Emotional abuse is an act when a person uses words or actions to control, frighten or isolate someone or take away their self-respect. Sometimes, emotional abuse refers to psychological abuse. And includes the following:
- constant yelling or criticism
- threats, put-downs, name-calling or insults
- making fun and preventing someone from practicing their faith or religion
- controlling or keeping someone from seeing friends or family
- destroying belongings, hurting pets or threatening to do so
- bullying: to intimidate or humiliate (even on the Internet)
Many forms of emotional abuse are not crimes but can be signs that the abuse might get worse.
Some forms are crimes such as:
- threats to harm the person or someone else
- criminal harassment (stalking) which involves following or repeatedly contacting a person when they don’t want contact and they are afraid.
Financial abuse happens when someone uses money or property to control someone else. This may include:
- withholding or limiting money to control someone
- taking someone’s money or property without permission
- pressuring someone to sign documents
- forcing someone to sell things or change a will
Most forms of financial abuse are crimes, including theft and fraud.
Neglect happens when a family member or partner fails to provide your basic needs. It includes:
- not providing proper food or warm clothing
- failing to provide adequate health care, medication and personal hygiene (if needed)
- failing to prevent physical harm
- failing to ensure proper supervision (if needed)
Common-law partners or spouses and have a duty to care for each other. Adults to their dependent children and as well as to their dependent parents.
Failure to provide the basic needs, and child abandonment. If a child is neglected, the social welfare or the child protection authorities could intervene and remove the child from their parents.