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New Laws mean Big Changes in Domestic Violence Cases

Posted on in Domestic Violence

Statistics show that an excess of one hundred thousand residents of Illinois are directly impacted by domestic violence every year. Illinois is taking big steps to change the way that both the offenders and victims are handled. TheresaGovernor Pat Quinn signed four separate bills that will become effective January 1, 2014. These new laws are designed to not only hand down stiffer punishments to the offender, but to prevent the violence from happening at all. The first bill addresses the issue of repeat offenders of domestic violence. Today, crimes in this category are considered misdemeanors and so there is not much punishment given. When this law becomes effective, repeat offenders will be charged with a felony. The second law deals with the privacy of the victim. In cases where the victim is covered by medical insurance that is carried by the abuser, there will be new procedures put into place so that the abuser will not be able to obtain information such as the address or other contact information given by the victim. This law recognizes the manipulative nature of many abusers when it comes to finding their victim. The third law extends the deadline for reporting for a task force that is currently developing a program for prevention that is aimed at adolescent and teen violence. The final law is aimed toward schools and the trend of teen dating violence. It requires that the schools educate children about the dangers and signs of dating violence and it also puts new procedures in place that dictate the school staff response. These are big changes for Illinois. If you have been the victim of domestic violence in your relationship, an empathetic and experienced Illinois family law attorney can advise you of the divorce law as it applies to your situation.

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