Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence


Summary of New York State Domestic Violence and Related Laws by Subject (beginning from 1995)

Subject Categories

Criminal Law/Enforcement/Criminal Court
Mandatory Arrest/Extension - A.3005-C/S.2005-C

Extends the mandatory arrest provision for family offenses for two more years, until September 1, 2019.
Signed: Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: §17 of Part A
Effective: April 20, 2017
Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §140.10(4)

Increased Maximum Length of Criminal Orders of Protection/Extension - A.3005-C/S.2005-C

Extends for two more years, until September 1, 2019, the increased maximum length of criminal court orders of protection. Maximum lengths: eight years for a felony conviction, five years for a misdemeanor conviction and two years for all other offenses/violations. 
Signed: Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: §19 of Part A
Effective: April 20, 2017
Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(5); 530.13(4)

Hate Crime Task Force - A.3005-C/S.2005-C

Establishes a hate crime task force within the NYS Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation.  The task force is charged with preventing, detecting and investigating, and assisting other law enforcement agencies in addressing, hate crimes committed due to a perception or belief regarding the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation of another person. The task force will also issue publications, in conjunction with the Division of Human Rights and the Division of Criminal Justice Services, to inform citizens of available rights and remedies under the law, including prohibitions against discrimination because of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, military status, sex, disability, familial status, domestic violence victim status, genetic predisposition status, or marital status.
Signed: Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: Part F
Effective: April 20, 2017
Amends: Executive Law §216 new subdivision 2

Translation of DIR Statements and Victim Rights Notice – A.4347 Davila/S.4288 Hoylman

Requires police to have a victim’s statement on a domestic incident report translated when the statement is not in English. The victim rights notice, which must be given to all victims when a domestic incident report is completed, must be translated by the state and made available to law enforcement agencies.  Victim statements and the notice must be translated into those languages most frequently spoken in New York State.

Signed: November 20, 2015 Chapter 432

Effective: February 18, 2016

Amends: Executive Law §§214(b), 837(15), 840(3)(f); Criminal Procedure Law §140.10(5)

Mandatory Arrest Extension

Extends the mandatory arrest provision for family offenses for two more years, until September 1, 2017.

Signed: Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: §17 of Part B

Effective: April 13, 2015

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §140.10(4)

Vulnerable Elderly Grand Jury Testimony - A.8780 Schimminger/S.7188 Nozzolio

Allows a social worker/informal caregiver to be present and support a vulnerable elderly person during grand jury proceedings. Signed:  September 4, 2014 Chapter 347

Effective:  September 4, 2014

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §190.25(3)(h)

Aggravated Harassment Second Degree - A.10128 Weinstein/S.7869 Nozzolio

Addresses the issues raised in the NYS Court of Appeals decision that struck down the section of aggravated harassment that was often charged in domestic violence cases.  In People v. Golb, the court decided that the language was too vague, overly broad and violated First Amendment free speech rights, by allowing for the criminalization of communication that has the intent to annoy.  The original aggravated harassment law criminalized telephone or mail communications intended to harass, annoy, threaten, or alarm another person.

The new law criminalizes communications that threaten to cause physical harm to, or unlawful harm to the property of, the victim or a family/household member, which the perpetrator knows or reasonably should know will cause a victim to fear such harm.  The law adds computer or any other electronic means of communication and amends other provisions of aggravated harassment second degree.

Signed: July 23, 2014  Chapter 188

Effective:  July 23, 2014

Amends: Penal Law §240.30

Executive Law §631(12)

Stalking Fourth Degree/GPS - A.7720-B People-Stokes/S.4187-C Kennedy

Adds the unauthorized tracking of a person’s movements or location by GPS or other device to the meaning of “following,” where a stalker knows or reasonably should know that following, telephoning, initiating communication or contact with the victim, a family member or acquaintance will cause material harm to the mental or emotional health of the victim.

Signed: July 23, 2014

Effective:  October 21, 2014

Amends: Penal Law §120.45

Financial/Economic Abuse - A.7400 Weinstein/S.5821 Robach

Addresses financial and economic abuse by adding certain crimes of identity theft, larceny and coercion to the list of family offenses in the Family Court Act and the criminal procedure law.  The new law also adds a new condition that can be included in orders of protection, requiring the abuser to return specified “identification documents,” such as a passport, immigration papers, social security card, benefits or insurance card, etc., to the protected party.

Signed:  December 18, 2013 Chapter 526

Effective:  December 18, 2013

Amends:  Family Court Act §§446; 551; 656; 812(1); 821(1)(a); 842; 1056(1)

Domestic Relations Law §252(1)

Criminal Procedure Law §§530.11(1); 530.12(1)

Arrest of Victim for Order of Protection Violation Prohibited - A.6547-B Weinstein / S.6505 Robach

Prohibits victims of domestic violence from being held in any way legally responsible for violation of an order of protection under which they are the protected party.  The law takes effect immediately and applies to all orders of protection currently in effect.  This prohibition will be explicitly stated on New York State’s order of protection forms: "This order of protection will remain in effect even if the protected party has, or consents to have, contact or communication with the party against whom the order is issued. This order of protection can only be modified or terminated by the court. The protected party cannot be held to violate this order nor be arrested for violating this order."

Signed: November 13, 2013  Chapter 480

Effective:  November 13, 2013, except that order of protection forms must revised to include the new language by January 12, 2014

Amends:  Domestic Relations Law §240(3)(b); 252(2)

Adds new Family Court Act §155(3); 846(a-1), 1056(7); amends §168(3); 446; 551; 656; 759; 842

Criminal Procedure Law §140.10(4); 530.12(6) & (8)

New Crimes and Expanded Bail Factors/2012 Domestic Violence Omnibus Bill (A.10624 Lentol/S.7638 Saland)

Enacts significant changes that will provide greater safeguards for victims and increase accountability for offenders:

  • Establishes the crime of "aggravated family offense" for offenders who commit certain misdemeanor-level offenses and have a previous conviction for a specified misdemeanor or felony against a family or household member within the past five years (class E felony) – effective January 1, 3013
  • Establishes a new subdivision of "aggravated harassment in the second degree" for offenders who, with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm, cause physical injury to a family or household member (A misdemeanor) – effective December 24, 2012
  • Allows the court to consider two new factors when determining bail in family offenses cases: any violations of an order of protection and the defendant’s history of possession of a firearm – effective December 24, 2012
  • Establishes a state-level domestic violence fatality review team within the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence which will bring together state and local domestic violence-related professionals to do in-depth reviews of select intimate partner homicides and periodically report aggregate data and recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature – effective April 23, 2013
  • Allows victims of domestic violence to have their insurance claims, forms, or billing correspondence for services sent to a confidential address, protecting both the details of such services and the address of the victim from the abuser who is the insurance policyholder.  Victims must make a reasonable request, which the insurance company can require in writing.  Applies to accident, health and salary protection insurance – effective January 1, 2013 
  • Prevents individuals charged with causing the death of a victim, or who were the subject of an order protecting the deceased, from being able to exercise control over disposition of the deceased victim’s remains, allowing family members to make these decisions and proceed with funeral and burial arrangements – effective November 24, 2012
  • Makes implementation changes to the New York State Address Confidentiality Program for domestic violence victims, established in the Department of State under Chapter 502 of the laws of 2011 – effective October 25, 2012

Signed: 2012 Chapter 491

Effective:  Signed on October 25, 2012 enacting multiple provisions with varying effective dates

Amends:  Executive Law §§108(1); 108(2)(a)(i); 108(4)(b)(i) and (c)(i); 108(6); 575(4);  repeals old/adds a new §575(10)

Public Health Law §4201(2)

Insurance Law §§2612(c)(2) and(h)

Penal Law §§240.30; 240.75

Criminal Procedure Law §§510.30(2)(a); 200.63

DNA Testing and Databank Expansion  (A.9555 Lentol/S.6733 Saland)

Expands the DNA databank by requiring DNA sample collection from anyone convicted of a felony or penal law misdemeanor.  In addition, the law expands defendants' access to DNA testing and databank comparisons both before and after conviction in appropriate circumstances, as well as access to discovery of property and materials after conviction to demonstrate their innocence.

Signed: 2012 Chapter 19

Effective: October 1, 2012

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §§440.30(1) and (1-a); 240.40(1); 440.10(1)

Executive Law §95(7)

Preservation of property and costs for testing or searches are addressed in unconsolidated law.  

Strangulation  (A.10161-A  Lentol/S.6987-A  Schneiderman)

Creates a new Article 121 in the Penal Law, titled "Strangulation and Related Offenses," establishing the new crimes of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation (A misdemeanor), strangulation in the second degree (D violent felony), and strangulation in the first degree (C violent felony).  All offenses are added to the list of family offenses.  In addition, the strangulation offenses are added to various sections of existing law for other considerations, such as DNA collection, hate crime prosecution, etc.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 405

Effective: November 11, 2010

Amends:  Penal Law §§70.02(1)(b) and (c); creates new Article 121; 460.10(1)(a); 60.05(5); 485.05(3); 130.91(2)

Criminal Procedure Law §§190.25(3)(h); 700.05(8)(b); 530.11(1)

Domestic Relations Law §115-d(3-a)(c)

Executive Law §995(7)(f)

Social Services Law §378-a(2)(j)

Family Court Act §812(1)

Mental Hygiene Law §10.03(f)

Vehicle and Traffic Law §509(cc)(4)(c)

2009 Omnibus Domestic Violence Bill  (A.9017 Weinstein/S.5031-A Hassell Thompson)

Makes numerous changes to various state laws, including:

  • requires law enforcement to forward domestic incident reports to probation and parole officers
  • provides for certain violation-level harassment convictions to remain unsealed and accessible to law enforcement, thereby, providing a more complete history of abuse – multiple sections/effective dates
  • requires judges to state on the record how domestic violence and/or child abuse were factored into custody and visitation decisions
  • strengthens domestic violence training requirements for attorneys for children (law guardians)
  • protects victims of sexual assault committed by a family or household member by designating certain low-level sexual assault crimes as family offenses, requiring that mandatory arrest provisions apply and allowing victims to petition Family Court for orders of protection, which would be required to be filed with the statewide registry
  • provides greater protections to victims by adding the length of incarceration to the maximum expiration date previously allowed for orders of protections issued in misdemeanor and violation cases

Signed:  2009 Chapter 476

Effective: December 19, 2009, except for multiple unsealed convictions provisions, which have varying effective dates

Amends:  Family Court Act §§249-b; 812; 821

Domestic Relations Law §240

Criminal Procedure Law §§530.11; 140.10; 160.55; 170.10; 530.12; 530.13

Criminal Mischief /Joint Property - Amendment (A.2006 Weinstein/S.4306 Schneiderman)

Amends Chapter 601 of 2008.   The interpretation of "property of another" made prosecuting criminal mischief charges difficult because individuals could assert the defense that, as one of the owners, they were entitled to damage joint property.   Chapter 601 clarified that an individual who damages property that is co-owned with another person can be prosecuted for criminal mischief.  The law included a requirement of explicit consent from a co-owner in order for the other owner to believe that s/he has a right to damage the property.  A.2006 removes the requirement of explicit consent to allow for circumstances where jointly-owned property may be destroyed or discarded, based on consent that is implied rather than expressed.

Signed: 2009 Chapter 45

Effective: April 29, 2009

Amends:  Penal Law §145.13

Criminal Mischief/ Joint Property (A.6308-A Weinstein/S.2061-A DeFrancisco)

Clarifies in penal law, specific to the crime of criminal mischief, that “property of another” applies to property that is jointly owned, allowing criminal mischief charges to be brought when two individuals jointly own property and one damages the property. This bill makes it clear that an abuser can no longer claim that, because he was a joint owner of property, he had the right to destroy the property.

* In signing the new law, the Governor expressed concern that the language providing a defense to damaging property requires a co-owner to have given consent to such action. Given that a spouse or co-owner could damage or discard jointly-owned property for various innocent reasons, the Governor requested, and the Legislature has agreed, to amend the law during the next session to eliminate the rigid requirement of explicit consent from co-owners. (Approval Message #40)

Signed: 2008 Chapter 601

Effective: November 1, 2008;

Amends:  Penal Law §145.13

Aggravated Harassment/Digital Technologies (A.9673 Flanagan/S.7994 Spano)

Clarifies that any written communication “transmitted or delivered” with the intent to cause annoyance or alarm constitutes aggravated harassment. The definition of “written communication” is expanded to include newer digital technologies, such as compact disc and DVD recordings.

Signed: 2008 Chapter 510

Effective: December 3, 2008

Amends:  Penal Law §240.30

Preventing Emergency Call (A.614 Paulin/S.2452 Saland)

Makes it a crime to prevent a person from communicating a request for emergency assistance by intentionally disabling or removing communication equipment, such as a telephone or teletypewriter device (TTY). The new crime was added to criminal mischief in the fourth degree, making it a class A misdemeanor.

Signed: 2008 Chapter 69

Effective: July 6, 2008

Amends:  Penal Law §145.00

Human Trafficking  (A.8679 Dinowitz/S.5902 Padavan)

Establishes the state’s first law to strengthen penalties against human trafficking and provide assistance to victims:

  • creates a class B felony for those who engage in sex trafficking and a class D felony for labor trafficking
  • clarifies current law to address “prostitution tourism”-- knowingly selling travel-related services to facilitate prostitution (class D felony of promoting prostitution in the third degree)
  • addresses the demand for prostitution by elevating the lowest level crime of patronizing a prostitute from a B to an A misdemeanor
  • establishes an interagency task force, co-chaired by DCJS and OTDA, to coordinate implementation of the new law, collect data on trafficking, and recommend best practices for training and community outreach
  • trafficking victims who have not been eligible for services because they are not U.S. citizens, or because they are foreign nationals who have not yet been certified as eligible for federal assistance programs, can now receive social services assistance from the state
  • services include case management, emergency temporary housing, health and mental health care, drug addiction screening and treatment, language and translation services, and job training
  • assistance is now available to coordinate with the federal government to obtain special visas that allow victims to testify against traffickers and facilitate future eligibility for refugee status

Signed: 2007 Chapter 74

Effective: November 1, 2007

Amends:  Penal Law §§230.25(1); 230.34; 230.36; 135.35; 135.36; 230.04; 230.07; 460.10(1)(a)

Criminal Procedure Law §700.05(8)(b)

NY Correction Law §§168-a(2)(a)(i); 168-d(1)(b)

Social Services Law Article 10-D

Executive Law §§621(5); 631(1)

Criminal Mischief Added to Family Offenses  (A.8854-A Weinstein/S.4542-A Kruger)

Adds criminal mischief to the list of crimes defined as a “family offense” in the Family Court Act and Criminal Procedure Law.

Signed: 2007 Chapter 541

Effective: November 13, 2007

Amends:  Family Court Act §812(1)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.11(1)

Detainer Warrant  (A.8592-B Aubrey/S.6352 Lanza)

Allows the director or deputy director of a local probation department to issue a warrant for a probationer who has violated a condition of probation to be taken into custody and detained if it is determined that s/he presents a sufficient safety risk. The law applies to probationers serving a probation sentence for conviction of certain sex offenses or a family offense, or is a youthful offender adjudicated for these crimes, and only in circumstances where the judge of the sentencing court or an alternative court is not available to issue a warrant. This is a three year pilot project to be conducted in four counties, to be selected by the Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives (excludes New York City).

Signed: 2007 Chapter 377

Effective: July 18, 2007

Amends:  Correction Law §500-a(1)(c)

Criminal Procedure Law §410.92

Criminal Contempt  ( S.7054 Maltese/A.10150 Hevesi)

Adds prior aggravated criminal contempt to the list of predicate offenses for criminal contempt first degree. Allows for the prosecution of misdemeanor-level criminal contempt to be prosecuted as a felony, if a perpetrator was previously convicted of aggravated criminal contempt in the past five years.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 349

Effective: November 1, 2006

Amends:  Penal Law §215.51(c)

Aggravated Criminal Contempt  (S.7055 Maltese/A.10151 Hevesi)

Expands aggravated criminal contempt (a class D felony) to include conviction for criminal contempt first degree, having been previously convicted of aggravated criminal contempt, or criminal contempt in the first degree within the past five years.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 350

Effective: November 1, 2006

Amends:  Penal Law §215.52

District Attorney Consultation  (S.6220 Meier/A.9058 Pheffer)

Removes the requirement of a district attorney to consult with a victim about the release of the defendant and the sentencing/disposition in a criminal case when the victim is unable or unwilling to cooperate, or her/his whereabouts are unknown.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 193

Effective: November 1, 2006

Amends:  Executive Law §642(1)

Incest  (S.6277-B Volker/A.9305-B Lentol)

Amends the penal law regarding sexual contact with a child, to eliminate the lower penalty when the sexually abused child is closely related to the perpetrator. State law had permitted the child sexual offender to be charged with incest, a class E non-violent felony. The new law creates three degrees of incest, based on the age and capacity of the victim and the age of the perpetrator. The new categories for crimes involving children will now be level B or D felonies, allowing for more serious penalties and incarceration. Additional offender provisions include mandatory registration with the Sex Offender Registry and payment of the sex offender victim fee. Victim provisions include prohibiting use of a polygraph, protection against name disclosure, child witnesses testifying via closed-circuit television or being accompanied to the grand jury.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 320

Effective: November 1, 2006

Amends:  Penal Law §§60.35(1)(b); 65.00(3); 65.10(4-a); 70.02(1)(a); 120.40(5)(b); 125.25(5); 255.25; 255.26; 255.27

Correction Law §§168-a(2)(a)(1); 851(2)

Criminal Procedure Law §§30.10(3)(f); 60.44; 65.00(1); 65.20(6); 65.20(9)(k); 60.45(2); 90.25(3)(h); 190.32(1); 380.50(6)

Civil Rights Law §50-b(1) – interpreted by 2007 N.Y. Op. Att'y Gen. 3

Civil Rights Law §§61(2); 62(2); 64

Executive Law §§259-c(14); 631(1); 642(2-a)(a); 995(7)(a)

Family Court Act §§343.1(4); 1012(e)(iii)

Social Services Law §412(8)(c)

DNA Database Expansion  (S.8446 Skelos/A.11951 Lentol)

Expands the list of criminal convictions for which a person must give a DNA sample for the state DNA database, including all felonies in the NYS Penal Law. The new law adds seventeen misdemeanor crimes, including additional assault, menacing, stalking, unlawful imprisonment, and other offenses.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 2

Effective: June 23, 2006

Amends:  Executive Law §995(7)

DNA Index Expansion  (A.11721 Lentol/S.7659 Volker)

Expands the list of felony crimes for which convicted offenders will be required to provide a sample for the computerized state DNA identification index. Expanding the index will improve the State's ability to prosecute repeat felons. This will increase the likelihood of holding offenders more accountable through stronger consequences.

Signed: 2004 Chapter 138

Effective: July 6, 2004

Amends:  Executive Law §995(7)

Criminal Procedure Law §440.30(1-a)

Criminal Contempt  First Degree  (A.8999 Lentol/S.5596 Johnson)

Amends the criminal contempt law (felony violation of an order of protection section) by adding criminal contempt 1st degree to the list of previous convictions within the last five years that can be used to charge an abuser with a new criminal contempt 1st (the original law only included a previous conviction for criminal contempt 2nd degree).

Signed: 2003 Chapter 331

Effective: November 1, 2003

Amends:  Penal Law §215.51(c)

Video Voyeurism  (A.8926 Schimminger/S.3060-B Marcellino)

"Stephanie's Law" creates felony criminal penalties for video voyeurism, including the unconsented use of mechanical, digital or electronic devices to record visual images of a person in a place where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy. Criminal penalties are also created for disseminating, publishing or selling images of another person's body which were obtained by unlawful surveillance.

Signed: 2003 Chapter 69

Effective: August 11, 2003

Amends:  Penal Law §§250.00(8); 250.40; 250.45; 250.50; 250.55; 250.60; 250.65 Correction Law §§168-a(2)(a); 168-a(2)(e); 168-d(1)(a)

Stalking Second Degree  (A.3974 DiNapoli/S.519 Balboni)

Adds stalking of ten or more victims on ten separate occasions to the stalking 2nd degree statute.

Signed: 2003 Chapter 598:

Effective: November 1, 2003

Amends:  Penal Law §§120.55(4); 120.55(5)

Aggravated Harassment  (A.7920 Paulin/S.4233-A Saland)

Reverses recent case law and clarifies that aggravated harassment can be charged and prosecuted based on the perpetrator's behavior, regardless of which party initiated the contact.

Signed: 2001 Chapter 385

Effective: November 1, 2001

Amends:  Penal Law §240.30(1)

Hate Crimes Act of 2000  (A.30002 Silver/S.4691 Goodman)

Provides that the commission of certain specified crimes will be punishable as hate crimes when committed in whole or substantial part because of a belief or perception regarding the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, age, disability or sexual orientation of the victim. Sanctions for hate crimes are increased by raising an offense to a higher category.

Signed: 2000 Chapter 107

Effective: October 7, 2000

Amends:  Creates a new Title Y/ §485 in Penal Law

Penal Law §§240.30(3); 240.31; 240.00(5) and (6); 200.50(4) and (7); 837(4-c)

Stalking - Amendment  (A.9506-A John/S.6173-B Rath)

Amends the Clinic Access and Anti-Stalking Act of 1999. Adds stalking in the second degree to the class D felony of stalking in the first degree when the crime involves a sex offense or an intentionally/recklessly caused injury. Makes technical changes and corrects deleted or misspelled words.

Signed: 2000 Chapter 434

Effective: October 19, 2000

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §530.14(1)(a)

Executive Law §631(12)

Family Court Act §842-a(1)(a)

Penal Law §§5.10(4); 120.55(1); 120.60

Clinic Access and Anti-Stalking Act of 1999  (A.9036-A John/S.6146 Rath)

Creates the new crime of stalking in the first, second, third and fourth degrees, with related provisions on firearms, warrants, sentencing requirements and crime victim compensation. Also creates the crime of criminal interference with health care services or religious worship.

Signed: 1999 Chapter 635

Effective: December 1, 1999

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §§ 530.11(1); 30.14(3)(a) and (1)(a); 700.05(8)(p) Executive Law §631(12)

Family Court Act §§812(1); 821(1)(a); 842-a(3)(a) and (1)(a)

Penal Law §§70.02(1)(c); 265.00(17)(b); 5.10(4);120.40; 120.45; 120.50; 120.55; 120.60; 240.70; 240.71; 265.00(17)(b)

Civil Rights Law §79-m

Justice Court Assistance Program  (A.7266 Higgins/S.3399 Lack)

Creates the Justice Court Assistance program within the Office of Court Administration. Local justice courts may apply for funds to improve services to communities. Funds may be used to automate court operations, improve facilities, improve recording of court proceedings, provide law books and related materials, provide training for justices and non-judicial court staff, etc.

Signed: 1999 Chapter 280

Effective: July 20, 1999

Amends:  Judiciary Law Article §21-B

SUNY Police Officer Authority  (A.7647-B Canestrari/S.4595-A Saland)

Provides campus police officers appointed by the State University of New York with the powers of police officers, including mandatory arrest authority in family offense cases.

Signed: 1998 Chapter 424

Effective: January 1, 1999

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §§1.20(34)(s); 1.20(34a)(a) and (d); 2.10(14) repealed; 120.10; 120.50; 120.60; 120.80(2),(3) and (4); 120.90; 690.40(2); 690.45(3) and (7); 690.50(1)-(6); 690.55(1)(b)

Education Law §§355(2)(1); 360(4)

Personal Property Law §§252(1); 258

Local Criminal Court Authority  (A.7029 Weinstein/S.3495 Saland)

Clarifies ambiguities in the Family Protection and Domestic Violence Intervention Act of 1994 regarding the authority of, and procedures for, local criminal courts to act on behalf of the Family Court or Supreme Court in family offense cases when these courts are closed. The bill sets forth specific procedures to be followed in hearing these cases and transferring them over to Family or Supreme Court.

Signed: 1997 Chapter 186

Effective: July 8, 1997

Amends:  Family Court Act §§154-b; 154-c; 154-d; 155; 155-a; 821(4) renumbered (2) and amended

Criminal Procedure Law §§530.11(2)(g) and (j) repealed; 530.11(4) added; 530.12(3),(3-a),(3-b); 530.12(15)

Domestic Relations Law §§240(3-b); 252(2-a)  

Primary Physical Aggressor  (A.8672 Weinstein/S.5791 Saland)

Amends mandatory arrest provisions to clarify that in family offense cases, where both parties allege an offense, arrest of both parties is not required if an officer believes one party was acting in self- defense. In misdemeanor cross-complaint cases, police are not required to arrest both parties, only the primary physical aggressor. Specific guidelines are provided to assist in the identification of the primary physical aggressor. The bill also prohibits an officer from threatening arrest in order to discourage a person's request for police intervention and specifies that arrest may not be based on a complainant's willingness to testify or participate in a subsequent judicial proceeding. The Division of Criminal Justice Services and the Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence are required to develop guidelines for the implementation of this law by police agencies.

Signed: 1997 Chapter 4

Effective: primary physical aggressor and self-defense provisions - October 14, 1997

Development of implementation guidelines - January 12, 1998

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §§140.10(4)(c); 140.10(4)

NYS Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation Act  (A.3379-A Clark/S.2163-A Volker)

Amends Penal Law to make the act of female genital mutilation a class E felony. Requires the Department of Health and the Department of Social Services to complete a study on the health risks and emotional trauma associated with female genital mutilation. Also requires the establishment and implementation of an educational prevention and outreach program.

Signed: 1997 Chapter 618

Effective: penalty provision- November 1, 1997

Amends:  Study and community education/prevention provision – December 16, 1997

Penal Law §130.85

Unconsolidated law – study and prevention provision

Coordination of Law Enforcement Elder Abuse Reports (A.8064 Clark/S.5365 Maziarz)

In family offense cases where the victim is sixty-five years or older, police are required to send a copy of the domestic violence incident report to the New York State Committee for the Coordination of Police Services to Elderly Persons. The committee is required to report annually to the Legislature on the incidence of such reports and to recommend policies and programs to assist law enforcement, the courts and the Crime Victim's Board in helping victims.

Signed: 1997 Chapter 626

Effective: September 17, 1997

Amends:  Criminal Procedure Law §140.10(5)

Executive Law §§844-b(3-a); 837(1 5)

Mandatory Arrest Extended  (A.10544-A Weinstein/S.6813-A Saland)

Makes several amendments to Family Protection and Domestic Violence Intervention Act, Chapter 222 of the Laws of 1994: extends the sunset on the mandatory arrest provisions in Criminal Procedure Law, from January 1, 2000 to July 1, 2001; amends the required data collection and extends the due date for the final report on the effectiveness of mandatory arrest, from April 1, 1999 to January 1, 2001.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 553

Effective: August 8, 1996

Amends: Unconsolidated Law - §§51 and 59(2) of Chapter 222 of the Laws of 1994.

Assault Upgrade  (A.8471 John/S.7932 Alesi)

Upgrades Assault in the First Degree from a Class C to a Class B felony, punishable by up to twenty-five years in prison.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 646

Effective: November 1, 1996

Amends:  Penal Law §§70.02(1)(a) and (b); 120.10

Expansion of Family Offenses  (S.3943 Saland/A.6825 Matusow)

Adds aggravated harassment second degree (A misdemeanor) to the definition of family offense in the Family Court Act and Criminal Procedure Law. This offense includes the "stalking" behaviors common in domestic violence cases -- telephone and mail harassment.

Signed: 1995 Chapter 440

Effective: October 1, 1995

Amends:  Family Court Act §812(1)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.11(1)