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Is there a difference between domestic violence and assault?

On Behalf of | Jan 17, 2023 | Domestic Violence |

Domestic violence is a broad term that refers to any number of behaviors that take place between partners, including physical, sexual, psychological and emotional abuse of various forms. There can be some overlap between a charge of domestic violence and assault in Washington; therefore, many people who receive a domestic violence charge may wonder if they might also receive a charge having to do with assault.

Here are some of the differences between domestic violence and assault in Washington

Domestic violence occurs within close circles

Domestic violence generally occurs between people who either live together or who have a close relationship with one another. This is one of the main factors that separate domestic violence from assault, as assault can take place anywhere and between complete strangers or acquaintances. Although most people think of domestic violence as being between intimate partners, it may also occur between close relatives and even roommates.

Domestic violence encompasses more than assault

Domestic violence, particularly in the case of physical abuse, can also be a form of assault. However, there are many types of domestic violence that may not fall under the umbrella of assault. Assault generally involves bodily harm or some type of physical contact. However, economic, emotional and some other forms of abuse can fall into the category of domestic violence but not assault.

By knowing some of the key differences between domestic violence and assault, people can be better aware of how to go forward when receiving a charge for either infraction.