If you are convicted of a domestic violence charge, either by trial or by pleading guilty, there are serious consequences that go with the conviction. Domestic assault is a Class A Misdemeanor, meaning it carries a maximum jail sentence is 11 months 29 days in jail and a maximum fine of $200. A Class A Misdemeanor is the most serious misdemeanor, but it is not a felony. The conviction stays on your record forever.
A conviction for a domestic assault in Tennessee can carry jail time. The amount of jail time will depend on the circumstances of the assault and on your past criminal history. Typically, a first time offender will not get a long jail sentence.
Along with jail time, a conviction will also carry supervised probation. The probation will last for 11 months 29 days, although shorter probation periods are up to the discretion of the judge or prosecutor. As part of the conditions of probation, the defendant will be subject to regular and random drug screens and have to pay probation fees and court costs on schedule, which can be as much as $100 per month.
As part of a conviction, the judge or prosecutor can also ask that the defendant meet other conditions such as obtaining drug and alcohol treatment, completing a batterers' intervention program, domestic violence classes, having no contact with the victim, community service, finding and maintaining employment, or making a significant monetary contribution to a women's shelter. Failure to complete these conditions can mean a probation violation with additional jail time.
With a domestic assault conviction, the defendant has a prohibition on owning or possessing any firearms, including hunting rifles. If you are employed as a police officer, security guard or other profession where you must carry a firearm, a conviction can mean a loss of employment. It may prevent you from getting a job or an apartment. Some companies are reluctant to hire those convicted.