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Domestic Assault and Battery

As a Massachusetts Domestic Assault and Battery Lawyer, Attorney DelSignore has been handling domestic assault and battery cases for years. I understand your concerns, worries and questions have helped countless people in your situation.

As a Massachusetts Domestic Assault and Battery Lawyer, Attorney DelSignore has been handling Domestic Assault and Battery cases for years. Attorney DelSignore understands your concerns, worries, and questions. I have helped countless people in your situation.

  • Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 265 Section 13 is the statute that defines a domestic assault and battery.
Key Takeaways When Charged With Domestic Assault and Battery:
  1. Your case will not be dismissed immediately even if the victim does not wish to go forward.
  2. The Commonwealth may be able to prove the case even if the so called victim in the case does not wish to testify.
  3. These cases take time so doing counseling or treatment can help resolve the case in a favorable way.

In order for a case to be considered domestic the offense must be against a family or household member.

The most asked questions about Domestic Assault and Battery cases:

  1. Can the case get dismissed on the first date, my wife, girlfriend, or family members regrets calling the police and wants the charges dropped?
  2. Do I need to hire a lawyer?
  3. What will happen in court?
1. What if: my girlfriend or wife regrets calling the police, can the case be dropped immediately?

A Domestic Assault and Battery charge in Massachusetts likely will not be resolved on the first date, the arraignment date. Even if the alleged victim, regrets calling the police and wants the case dismissed, prosecutors are slow to dismiss these cases once charges are filed. Often, the parties are back together before the first court date, making it seem like the charge will be quickly dismissed. In many cases, you will have to set the case down for trial prior to the case getting dismissed or bring the complaining witness in during a pretrial hearing. If the complaining witnesses decides to exercise their martial privilege, or fifth amendment privilege, there may not be enough evidence for the Commonwealth to prosecute the case.

2. Can the Commonwealth prosecute a domestic assault and battery if my wife or girlfriend is not willing to testify?

Even if the alleged victim does not wish to go forward with the case, the prosecutor will still attempt to pursue the charges, relying on other evidence to prove the case.

It is common for the prosecutor to rely on the following elements to prove a case without the involvement of the alleged victim:

  • A 911 Call
  • A confession of the defendant
  • Observations of other witnesses
3. What happens if the alleged victim DOES want to pursue a charge?

The alleged victim of an assault and battery case may have a motive to fabricate the charges in order to get back at the accused.

This occurs during divorce proceedings, custody disputes, and relationship breakups. If the alleged victim wishes to proceed with the case, you will need to prepare a defense.

Defenses for Domestic Assault and Battery Cases


In a self-defense case, an attorney can obtain prior violent acts of the alleged victim to argue that the alleged victim was the aggressor. In Commonwealth v. Adjutant, the court ruled criminal defense attorneys to admit this evidence at trial to support a claim of self-defense.

Fabrication by the alleged victim

showing the motivation of the alleged victim to fabricate in order to contest her testimony at trial.

Ulterior motivation

That the alleged victim has an ulterior motive to lie or try to use the criminal process for an improper purpose.

Potential Penalties for Domestic Assault and Battery Under M.G.L c. 265 §13M

If you are convicted of a Domestic Assault and Battery you may face up to 2.5 years in jail, a fine, or both. On a second or subsequent offense you may face up to 5 years in state prison. The court will also order you to complete a certified batterer's intervention program. The certified batter’s program is a very long and intensive program that is time consuming and is a very onerous condition of probation.

What is the Next Step?

A domestic assault and battery is a serious criminal charge. If you are charged with a domestic assault and battery before you talk to anyone about it, call DelSignore Law and schedule a phone appointment to discuss your case with either Attorney DelSignore.

  1. Call us to set up a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss a domestic assault and battery charge. You can call Attorney Delsignore directly at 781-686-5924.
  2. Download Attorney DelSignore’s FREE book on Domestic Assault and Battery Charges to read about your charge in more detail and get the answers to all your questions.
  3. Check out these pages for frequently asked Domestic Assault and Battery questions:
    1. Can I be held without bail for domestic assault and battery?
    2. Massachusetts Domestic Assault and Battery Court Process
    3. Penalties for Massachusetts Domestic Assault and Battery Charges
    4. Frequently Asked Questions Regarding a Domestic Assault and Battery charge
Massachusetts Criminal Defense Lawyer Blog - Domestic Assault and Battery
Client Reviews
Michael was very professional and explained the process clearly and told us to be patient. After one year the charges got dismissed in the trial. Excellent knowledge of the court systems in the area of Boston. Would highly recommend him Ashwani
A careless decision on my part left me facing charges which would have severely hampered my ability to stay employed and support myself. But attorney DelSignore's skillful analysis and challenging of the evidence against me resulted in a conviction on a lesser charge. Now I'll be able to go on with my life, having learned a lesson I'll never forget. Thank you, Michael. Scott
Mike stuck with my case for 3.5 years and always kept me informed regarding the status. Ultimately, because of his due diligence, we ended up with an OUI not guilty verdict. This case could have gone many ways but his thorough review of the case and exceptional preparedness for trial ultimately drove a positive outcome. Thank you Mike! David
Michael DelSignore did an amazing job with my case! He was always available to answer any questions I had and helped walked me through the entire process. I could not have done it without them! I highly recommend choosing this law firm to deal with your legal needs, you will not be dissatisfied. Ashley
I cannot express the gratitude towards Michael for his amazing work and help. It was a very stressful event and they certainly put me at as much ease as possible. From start to finish it took 14 months and all the way through they were both very engaged with me. Today was worth the wait, Michael was great in court and I was rightfully found not guilty. I would recommend Michael over and over again. Claire