Domestic Violence in Washington State
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What is a Washington Domestic Violence (DV) Crime?
If you have been charged with a crime in Washington labeled as "DV" it means the court considers your case a domestic violence related case. The DV label can be attached to many different types of charges and both misdemeanors and felonies.
Washington law defines a domestic violence crime as a crime committed by one family or household member against another or against someone with whom you have a "dating relationship". RCW 10.99.020
For purposes of a domestic violence crime, a "family or household member" is:
- a spouse,
- a former spouse,
- someone with whom you have a child in common even if you never married or lived together,
- an adult you are related to by blood or marriage,
- any adult with whom you are living with or whom you have lived with in the past,
- anyone sixteen years old or older who you live with or have lived with and have dated,
- anyone sixteen years of age or older who have or have had a dating relationship,
- anyone with whom you have a parent-child relationship (biological or legal). This includes stepparents, stepchildren, grandparents and grandchildren.
A "dating relationship" means a social relationship of a romantic nature. To determine if a "dating relationship" exists the court may consider: (1) the length of time the relationship has existed, (2) the nature of the relationship, and (3) the frequency of interaction between the parties. RCW 26.50.010