An interesting fact for those charged with domestic violence – in Washington there is a law that allows alleged victims to take leave from work. It is called the Domestic Violence Leave law, RCW 46.76.
In short, RCW 46.76 authorizes victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking to take ‘reasonable’ leave from work to take care of legal or law enforcement needs, seek treatment for physical and mental injuries, obtain services from a shelter or social program, obtain mental health counseling, participate in ‘safety’ planning, relocate and/or take ‘any other actions’ necessary to increase safety. Interestingly, however, the law doesn’t just permit the alleged victim do these things, ‘family members’ of the victim may also take ‘reasonable’ leave to help the victim seek treatment or obtain help/ services.
What is ‘reasonable’? Well it is determined on a case-by-case basis and depends on the individual circumstances. It is noted that also that ‘family members’ shockingly include those in a ‘dating relationship’ with the victim.
The leave taken under the law can be with pay in many circumstances, because the employee can select to take sick leave or other paid time off to cover the period. It is noted that both private and public sector employers are bound by the law, and no employer may discharge, threaten to discharge, demote, discipline, or otherwise retaliate against those who seek leave under the law.
Taking all of above into consideration, the question begs – is this law one that leads itself to be taken advantage of? Although domestic violence is a very serious and complex issue in Washington, are there folks out there who manipulate the system for their own benefit? Sadly the answer is probably yes, but can only hope it is the exception and not the rule.
If you (or a loved one) find yourself facing a DV related criminal charge, it is infinitely important to immediately contact and hire a Seattle domestic violence attorney. The Seattle domestic violence attorneys that make up the criminal defense team of SQ Attorneys are highly qualified and reputable Seattle domestic violence lawyers that are dedicated to providing top notch, aggressive representation for those arrested for crime all across Western Washington and the Greater Puget Sound region. The team creates success by working with law enforcement and the prosecuting attorney’s office to ensure that all facts and circumstances related to the criminal allegations are considered in creating the fairest, most equitable and just resolution possible in light of all the surrounding circumstances of the given case. So, whether cited for domestic violence related assault, malicious mischief, property destruction or some other crime, protect yourself … call SQ Attorneys immediately at 206.441.0900.