Hurting, intimidating or otherwise harming another person either physically or psychologically is never okay. That is why there are laws that make this a criminal act. The two main laws that apply here are for domestic violence and assault. While these two things are very similar in Georgia, there is a distinct difference between the two.

The National Conference of State Legislatures explains that main difference between a domestic violence and assault case is who the victim is. In a domestic violence case, the victim is a family member or someone who lives with you. It includes parents, children, spouses or anyone you are in a romantic relationship with. It also includes those who you may have been involved with in the past, such as an ex-spouse. Assault does not require there to be a relationship between you and the victim.

Furthermore, domestic violence is often assault. It may include assault, battery, property damage or trespassing. It covers a bit more ground than a simple assault charge does. Domestic violence may also be non-physical and include things such as intimidation and threats. Even holding someone against their will or not allowing them to see family and friends can be domestic violence.

Essentially, domestic violence is a huge umbrella whereas assault has a much more narrow definition. A victim of domestic violence may also have more options when it comes to getting protection against the person who caused the abuse. This information is for educational use only. It is not for use as legal advice.