California Defense Attorneys

Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer | Protect Your Freedom

Don't gamble with your freedom.

California laws permit parents and legal guardians to use force when punishing children - to a point. If someone else believes that you crossed the line, their accusations can result in child abuse charges. Crimes against children carry severe penalties, not to mention significant social stigma. If you are a parent of the alleged victim, you could also lose permanent custody of your children.

Waiting to hire an attorney puts your future at risk. We need to begin right away so we can start preserving evidence and get ahead of the prosecution team trying to put you behind bars. Get the help you want by hiring a child abuse lawyer at Amicus Legal Group as soon as possible.

Types of Child Abuse and Child Endangerment Cases We Handle

In California, parents are permitted to swat, spank, or paddle children and still not be guilty of child abuse. That said, you can understand the charges better by looking at specific statutes that describe abusive acts against children.

Amicus Legal Group will defend the following charges

  • Child abuse PC 273a(a)

    This subsection describes a crime that occurs when a child suffers unjustifiable pain or mental suffering.

  • Child abuse PC 273d(a)

    This subsection describes a crime that differentiates a “spanking” from abuse. The prosecutor must show that you acted intentionally to inflict inhumane physical punishment, not reasonable discipline of the child.

Consequences of a Conviction

Even for a misdemeanor conviction, you can face up to one year in county jail. You can also receive other penalties that include parenting and/or child abuse classes, steep fines and a criminal conviction that can follow you around for the rest of your life.

Courts have been seeing higher numbers of cases being prosecuted due to pressure from advocacy groups and the revenue that convictions generate. While most of the consequences of a conviction are well known (court fines, probation, jail time), consider how a conviction could impact your life:

  • Could it affect your job or future employment opportunities?
  • How will family and friends react?
  • What might happen in family court proceedings?
  • Would you have immigration issues?

Just because you spanked your child does not make you a harmful or abusive parent. Give your family the fighting chance it deserves by hiring a child abuse defense lawyer that has a strong reputation for achieving client results.

SERVICES

POTENTIAL JAIL TIME

Misdemeanor child abuse or endangerment: Up to one year in county jail.

Felony child abuse or endangerment: Up to six years in state prison.

Evaluate Your Options with a Free Case Review

We fight for clients every day and are committed to their success since their lives depend on it. Call for a free consultation today because when the gavel comes down it will be too late to reconsider your choice of lawyer.

For more information about fighting your charges, call Amicus Legal Group to get the answers you need. We are available to address your legal questions at (888) 588-1777 or by sending us a private note here.

Los Angeles Attorney John-Paul

What happens in a child abuse investigation

Typically, law enforcement becomes involved in child abuse matters when a “mandatory reporter,” like a teacher or doctor, noticed injuries on a child’s body. They must also report if a child states that he or she has been the subject of child abuse.

What happens in a child abuse investigation

Typically, law enforcement becomes involved in child abuse matters when a “mandatory reporter,” like a teacher or doctor, noticed injuries on a child’s body. They must also report if a child states that he or she has been the subject of child abuse.

During an investigation

Upon receiving a report, police will investigate the circumstances to determine if probable cause for an arrest exists. They will also refer the case to the local officials at the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) who will perform an independent investigation to determine if the children are safe.

If both police and DCFS find a reason to charge child abuse, the case will go to the district attorney’s office. If the prosecutor believes that you are guilty or have a history of violence, then charges will be filed as a felony or misdemeanor.

Potential defenses

Like criminal defense lawyers, no two child abuse cases are alike. Amicus Legal Group will perform an exhaustive investigation and use our findings to determine what prosecutors can, and cannot, prove.
Possible defenses that your lawyer may use include:

• You did not act intentionally
• The act was a reasonable discipline measure
• You did not commit the act
• Someone else abused the child
• The child was injured in another’s care at the time

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Protect your freedom

When our legal team says that child endangerment and abuse charges are defensible, we mean it. However, these cases are highly technical, emotional, and require a solid knowledge of the law. Defend yourself by hiring a child abuse attorney known for their tough stance when representing defendants.

Protect your freedom

When our legal team says that child endangerment and abuse charges are defensible, we mean it. However, these cases are highly technical, emotional, and require a solid knowledge of the law. Defend yourself by hiring a child abuse attorney known for their tough stance when representing defendants.

Benefits of working with a private defense lawyer

Here are some ways the defense attorneys at Amicus Legal Group can protect your future.

  • Keep your record clean

    It’s no fun having a conviction in public records where employers and others can see it. In many cases we can get the charges reduced or expunged from your record.

  • Stay out of court

    Cases can often be handled in the privacy of our office or over the phone. Imagine being able to avoid stressful court hearings and missed time at work.

  • Avoid jail time

    We’ve kept many of our clients out of jail. Even in the most difficult cases, we can negotiate work release or home detention so that you can get on with life without having to miss work or family obligations.

  • Get charges reduced or dismissed

    We tirelessly research and investigate the facts in order to get your charges dismissed or the best deal possible.

Get Help from an Experienced Attorney

People charged with a crime often struggle with whether to hire a private attorney or use a public defender. While a court-appointed lawyer will be cheaper, that choice may prove costly if you end up pleading guilty in court.  With heavy caseloads, public defenders can be overworked and might not have the time to carefully review all the evidence in your case.

Evaluate Your Options with a Free Case Review

We fight for clients every day and are committed to their success since their lives depend on it. Call for a free consultation today because when the gavel comes down it will be too late to reconsider your choice of lawyer.

For more information about fighting your charges, call Amicus Legal Group to get the answers you need. We are available to address your legal questions at (888) 588-1777 or by sending us a private note here.

Client testimonials quote

Client Testimonials

Five Star California Law Firm
John-Paul took my civil case when no one else would because other lawyers didn’t have confidence in my daughter who has special needs to testify, if needed. John-Paul won her case against the school district without a jury because he cared about my child, believed she was honest and deserved justice. He still doesn’t mind taking my calls whenever I have a question regarding her case.
Dionne L.

Attorney John Paul-Serrao helped us to win our case against the insurance company after we were involved in a traffic accident where our car was rear ended, we tried to handle it ourselves with the insurance company and they did not want to cooperate with us, so we hired Mr. Serrao and he was able to get us a settlement above with the insurance company was willing to pay. I would highly recommend him.

Lupe G.

John-Paul is well known in our community as a smart and effective criminal defense lawyer who is sensitive to his clients’ situations and responsive to their needs. I refer my clients to him with confidence when they need help with the criminal justice system.

Lawrence Brock

Occasionally you meet another attorney who is so impressive both personally and professionally that you want to be affiliated with them in any way you can both personally and professionally. That is how I feel about John-Paul. I not only consider him one of the finest attorneys I know, but I now proudly call him my friend. He is among the very best.

David Booth

Mr. Serrao worked on my DUI charge earlier this year and all I can say is WOW! Not only did he keep me updated with the case but his knowledge of the process helped calm my nerves, which was very important to me. He showed care for me as a client and I can’t thank him enough. I would recommend him to anyone in need of a quality criminal defense attorney.

Derrick J.

I had the pleasure of working a very large scale drug case with Mr. Serrao, representing co-defendants. Mr. Serrao was a pleasure to work with. Highly skilled and very aggressive in his advocacy on his client’s behalf. I highly recommend Mr. Serrao for anyone looking for a criminal defense attorney.

Babak Farahan

John-Paul is a superb attorney. He was my mentor when I was in law school, and now as an attorney I still go to him for advice on complex cases. When my brother required representation I referred him to John-Paul. That is how highly I think of JP as an attorney. I would highly recommend him to anyone who needs representation.

Kit Westbrook

John-Paul is an extremely effective criminal defense attorney. The one thing that makes him stand out from other defense attorneys is that he talks to his clients to learn the circumstances surrounding their incident and then he makes a forceful and articulate argument in defense of his clients. I recommend my clients to John-Paul when they are in need of a criminal defense attorney because I know he will stand up for them.

Stephen Rinka
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