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Restraining Orders—What to Know

  • By: Gene Kirzhner
  • Published: December 6, 2022

Have you been the victim of harassment and don’t know what to do? In some states, victims of harassment seeking protection from harassment are granted restraining orders. Restraining orders are forms of protection against domestic violence and harassment. The best way to protect yourself is to fill out the application correctly and submit it early. This article answers you’re most common questions about restraining orders, where to find them and how to file them.

How to Apply for a Restraining Order

You must have experienced or witnessed domestic or family violence to apply for a restraining order. To qualify, this abuse must be a pattern of behavior that caused you to fear for your safety. Abuse with physical force, sexual offenses, emotional and psychological abuse, stalking, and cyber stalking are the most common form of violence. Applications for restraining orders are free and can be found at the courthouse. Alternatively, you can download an online application or pick one up at a police station or a county courthouse. A judge will accept an application for a restraining order in person, by mail or phone.

What Does a Restraining Order Prohibit?

A restraining order, also called a protection order, can prohibit a person from contacting you. The restraining order can be temporary or public, depending on the situation. A temporary restraining order is usually issued right away when you go to the court on the date and time the court told you. It might be on oral testimony and affidavits presented by your attorney. A permanent restraining order is given a few weeks from the moment you asked for it in court or after both parties have a chance to present evidence in writing to the court.

How Long Does a Restraining Order Last?

A restraining order is in place to protect you from harm and future harassment. The length of the order will depend on the circumstances of your case and where you live. If granted at a temporary court hearing, it will last no more than two or three weeks. A judge might extend this period to a year if you both go to court and one of you says that harassment is still going on.

What if a Restraining Order Is Breached?

The restraining order usually comes with a warning that violation of the order can result in arrest, imprisonment, and a fine. If a restraining order is violated by any party, including the victim and witnesses, law enforcement authorities are likely to consider it for questioning. The law enforcement authorities will file criminal charges against an individual who violates a restraining order. A person who has been arrested can be held in a local jail until their trial is heard. The criminal conviction may lead to imprisonment and fines. It is crucial to know when someone’s restraining order has been violated so that they must abide by the terms and conditions of the order.

Contact Us Today

Restraining orders are quite complex thus you require qualified attorneys to help you with the entire process. At Strategic Divorce we are qualified and experienced and offer the best legal counsel. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us soon as possible so we can discuss the specifics of your situation and help you through the process of obtaining an order for protection. Call us at (847) 234-4445 and book an appointment today.

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