It may be possible to avoid a criminal record even if there is a finding of guilt for a domestic assault charge.
Determining whether or not you will have a criminal record upon conviction of domestic assault depends on the sentence given to you. Once a finding of guilt has been made by a judge in a case of domestic assault, the next step is to give the offender an appropriate sentence. The type of sentence given determines whether or not there will be a criminal record upon conviction. Some of the sentences you may receive for a domestic assault charge include:
• absolute discharge
• conditional discharge
• suspended sentence
• Conditional Sentence
If you receive this sentence for a domestic assault, you have been found guilty but there is not conviction registered. You are not given a probation order (i.e conditions to abide by). Once the discharge is received, it stays on your criminal record for one year. After that, it is removed without the need to apply for a pardon. You do need to write a request to remove an absolute discharge if your absolute discharge was received before July, 24, 1992.
Similar to an absolute discharge, being given a conditional sentence results in a finding of guilt but no conviction is registered. The differentiating factor is that with a conditional discharge, there are conditions the offender must follow. A conditional discharge stays on your record for three years after completing your probation order. You do need to write a request to remove a conditional discharge if your absolute discharge was received before July, 24, 1992.
A suspended sentence requires you to abide by a probation order for a one to three years. If you receive a suspended sentence for a domestic assault, a finding of guilt has been made and a conviction is registered. This means you will have a criminal record and must apply for a pardon to have the conviction removed from your record.
Probation is when a court orders an offender to do or refrain from doing certain things for a set amount of time. A probation order can be combined with a conditional sentence, intermittent imprisonment or imprisonment. Probation orders can only be three years long.
A fine is money an offer pays to the court. If your sentence is a fine, you will have a conviction registered against you and will have to apply for a pardon to have the fine removed from your record.
When you are sentenced to imprisonment for a domestic assault charge, you are given a jail sentence. You are taken to jail and a conviction is registered. You must apply for a pardon to have the jail sentence removed from your criminal record.
Commonly known as house arrest, a conditional sentence is where you serve your sentence outside of jail in your community but with strict conditions. A conviction is registered and you must apply for a pardon to have the conditional sentence removed from your criminal record.
You do not need to apply for a Record Suspension if your charges were dismissed, stayed or withdrawn or did not result in a conviction.