Define Domestic Battery in Illinois

If you’re like many people, you don’t think much about the criminal charge of domestic battery until you’re directly involved – such as being charged with this serious crime. But how does the state of Illinois define domestic battery, and why does that matter? This guide explains.

Define Domestic Battery in Illinois

To define domestic battery in Illinois, you must look at the Illinois Compiled Statutes. The law in Illinois defines domestic battery this way:

“A person commits domestic battery if he or she knowingly without legal justification by any means:

  1. Causes bodily harm to any family or household member.
  2. Makes physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature with any family or household member.”

It’s important to note that the law is very specific about family and household members. You can’t be charged with domestic battery (though you can be charged with other crimes, such as battery) unless the alleged victim shares a specific relationship with you. Those relationships are:

  • Spouses and ex-spouses
  • Blood-related family members
  • Co-parents
  • Current and former roommates
  • Elderly adults or disabled adults and their caregivers
  • Individuals who are related by blood through a child
  • Parents and children
  • Stepparents and children

Related: Domestic violence trial questions

Punishments for Meeting the Legal Definition of Domestic Battery in Illinois

If your case meets the legal definition of domestic battery in Illinois, the court can convict you – and if you’re convicted, you may be facing:

  • A Class A misdemeanor, for which the sentence is imprisonment for up to a year and fines of up to $2,500
  • A Class 4 felony, for which the sentence is imprisonment for up to 3 years and fines of up to $25,000

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Domestic Battery Defense?

If you need to talk to a domestic battery defense attorney in Illinois, we’re here to help. Call us at 847-920-4540 now – we’ll be happy to give you a free consultation and talk to you about your options.

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