Domestic violence law on white wooden table, closeup

Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer in Lafayette and Throughout Louisiana

If you have been wrongfully accused of domestic violence, it is important to take the situation seriously and seek legal counsel as soon as possible.

Domestic violence accusations can have serious consequences, including jail time, fines, and a permanent criminal record.

These charges can also strip you of certain constitutional rights, such as the right to vote and bear arms. Not to mention the social stigma that can follow you for a lifetime.

At the Ikerd Law Firm, we know that being accused of domestic violence can be a traumatizing and incredibly stressful experience.

Chad Ikerd has well over a decade of experience in defending these cases, including litigating them in the higher courts.

We also know that emotions get out of control and that people sometimes misremember or even intentionally lie in the heat of the moment, putting you at risk of a domestic violence charge or conviction.

Let our experienced team go to bat for you, working hard to protect your rights and defend your good name against these allegations.


Facing a Domestic Violence Charge? – Do Not Go at It Alone

In today’s emotionally charged society, domestic violence is a growing problem that affects people from all walks of life, perpetrated by domestic abusers. It can range from physical violence to psychological abuse and even sexual assault.

Because of the severity and consequences of domestic violence cases, it is important to have an experienced and qualified domestic violence defense attorney in Lafayette, Louisiana to represent you.


Experience You Can Trust to Fight to Clear Your Name

We know the Louisiana law inside and out and can help you navigate the south Louisiana and local Lafayette court system.

Backed by over a decade of experience and a solid track record of positive client outcomes, we have what it takes to position your case for success.

We understand the underlying dynamics of domestic violence cases, how the allegations can be defended, and how to achieve the best results for our clients.

We will work to fully investigate the matter on day one, so do not wait to reach out to us for representation!


A Comprehensive and Robust Defense

Our firm takes a comprehensive approach to representing our clients. We carefully assess the details of your case, exploring all possible legal defenses to best protect your rights.

Our team, led by attorney Chad Ikerd, can examine the facts, prepare an appropriate legal strategy, and negotiate with the prosecution to reach a favorable outcome. There are several local programs that you may be able to enroll in or complete that will look good when it comes time to negotiate a plea if the trial is not in your interest.

We have worked with them all and can help navigate that process. We strongly believe in the concept of rehabilitation, not punishment, and strive to resolve domestic violence cases without harsh repercussions.


Innocent Until Proven Guilty

Domestic Violence DefenseWe wholeheartedly believe in the idea that everyone is innocent until proven guilty, working tirelessly to ensure that our clients receive the justice they are owed.

Those accused of domestic violence will face severe legal penalties, including imprisonment and heavy fines if convicted. Unfair allegations can occur in these cases, so it is important to have an experienced attorney on your side who understands the law.

Steps to Take When Wrongfully Accused of Domestic Violence in Lafayette or Throughout Louisiana

There are several steps you can take to help protect yourself if you have been wrongfully accused of domestic violence:

  1. Gather evidence: Collect any evidence that might help to prove your innocence, such as witness statements, photographs, and recordings.
  2. Seek legal counsel: Find an experienced attorney who can help you understand the charges against you and develop a defense strategy.
  3. Stay calm: It is important to remain calm and not make any statements or take any actions that could be used against you in court.
  4. Follow court orders: If you have been issued a restraining order, it is important to follow it carefully and avoid any contact with the person who accused you.
  5. Be prepared for trial: If the case goes to trial, be prepared to present your defense and challenge any evidence against you.

It is important to remember that you have the right to a fair trial and to defend yourself against the allegations. With the help of an experienced attorney, you can fight the charges and work to clear your name.


Types of Legal Defense for Domestic Violence Charges

There are several legal defenses that may be available to you if you have been charged with domestic violence.

The specific defenses that are available to you will depend on the facts of your case and the laws of Louisiana. Some common legal defenses to domestic violence charges include:


You may be able to argue that you acted in self-defense or defense of another person. To successfully use this defense, you will need to show that you had a reasonable belief that you or someone else was in imminent danger of harm and that the use of force was necessary to prevent that harm.

Defense of property

You may be able to argue that you were acting to protect your property when the alleged domestic violence occurred.

Lack of intent

You may be able to argue that you did not intend to commit an act of domestic violence. This defense may be available if you did not intentionally or knowingly cause harm to the other person.

False allegations

You may be able to argue that the allegations against you are false and that you did not commit the act of domestic violence. This defense may be used if there is no evidence to support the allegations or if there are inconsistencies in the accuser’s story.


In some cases, you may be able to argue that the other person consented. This may occur when siblings fight. However, this defense is generally not available if the use of force was excessive or if the other person was unable to give consent due to age, incapacitation, or other factors.

It is important to note that these are just a few examples of the legal defenses that may be available to you. Chad Ikerd is an experienced criminal defense attorney, with over a decade of experience defending these types of cases. Chad Ikerd can help you understand the specific defenses that are available in your case and assist you in building a strong defense strategy.


Frequently Asked Questions about Domestic Violence Cases:

What is a Gwen’s Law Hearing?

Words DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and gavel on grey marble tableAnyone arrested for a crime where the alleged victim is a family member MAY be subject to a “Gwen’s Law Hearing.” La. C. Cr. P. art. 313. Typically, someone arrested for a criminal charge has a bond set by a judge or commissioner within a short period of their arrest, when they are arrested without an arrest warrant.

However, the law allows the court to temporarily withhold setting a bond in felony cases where the victim is a family or household member of the accused. The idea is to let things calm down and to require a contradictory hearing.

A Gwen’s Law hearing is where the bond is set for someone arrested on such a charge. Typically, the charge will be some version of domestic abuse or battery, but some other felony offenses may qualify as well. The court must hold a Gwen’s Law hearing relatively quickly, within five days.

At the hearing, the State will attempt to put on evidence showing how dangerous you are to the community and your family member, the alleged victim.

The State will likely ask for no bond to be set or a very high bond. Furthermore, the State will likely ask for a restraining order which may have SERIOUS collateral consequences, including not being able to return to your home, not having contact with your family, and even the loss of your right to bear arms!

If your family member is arrested on one of these charges and sitting in jail without a bond waiting for the next Gwen’s Law hearing, do not wait, call Ikerd Law Firm now at 337-366-8994. Time is of the essence! There is a lot of work to do to prepare for a Gwen’s Law hearing and very little time to do it.

Can I Lose My Constitutional Rights if Convicted of a Domestic Abuse Charge?

Yes! Most domestic violence cases are felony offenses which can leave you with a violent criminal conviction on your record. Even a misdemeanor domestic abuse battery charge is a significant conviction. This will haunt you in the future when you apply for a job or apply for a contractor’s license, just as an example.

More significantly, you may lose certain Constitutional Rights such as the right to vote and the right to bear arms.

Furthermore, recent changes to the criminal laws in Louisiana have made certain domestic abuse charges “crimes of violence,” which require you to serve more time in jail, if convicted. La. R.S. 14:2(B).

Even if you are not convicted of a domestic abuse charge, simply being charged can have an impact on your constitutional rights.

As mentioned above, if you must go through a Gwen’s Law hearing, most judges will impose a restraining order on you as a condition of bond. Thus, you will have to surrender all firearms and dangerous weapons while you fight to defend yourself in court.

Who Qualifies as a “Family Member” for Domestic Violence Laws?

Although some domestic abuse statutes have more narrow or broad definitions of a family member or household member, generally the definition found under the Domestic Abuse Battery statute is followed, La. R.S. 14:35.3(B), and states:

4) “Family member” means spouses, former spouses, parents, children, stepparents, stepchildren, foster parents, foster children, other ascendants, and other descendants. “Family member” also means the other parent or foster parent of any child or foster child of the offender.

(5) “Household member” means any person presently or formerly living in the same residence with the offender and who is involved or has been involved in a sexual or intimate relationship with the offender, or any child presently or formerly living in the same residence with the offender, or any child of the offender regardless of where the child resides.


Get the Representation You Need to Clear Your Name

At the Ikerd Law Firm, we understand the complexities of domestic violence cases and have the experience and knowledge to vigorously defend your rights.

We take time to understand our client’s cases and will provide honest and realistic advice based on our experience.

If you are facing domestic violence-related issues, give us a call today at 337-366-8994.

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(337) 366-8994