Do I have to report domestic violence?

Reporting of adult domestic violence is not mandatory in New York. Calling the police and reporting a domestic violence incident will most likely lead to the arrest of the alleged perpetrator, whether it is a romantic partner or family member. A judge is also likely to issue an order of protection against them. In addition, it could be months before legal proceedings are resolved.

Calling law enforcement is generally the most effective way of handling domestic violence. However, sometimes the arrival of police at the scene could make the situation more difficult for the domestic violence victim. If possible, find out what the victim would prefer. Otherwise, if you think someone is in immediate danger or witness people fighting, it may be beneficial to trust your instincts and call the police to intervene.

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