Restrain a person or others who may be harassing you and/or your family. Everyone is entitled to the right of peaceful enjoyment but often there arises circumstances which create a hostile environment whether it be at home or at work. Take steps now to protect your rights and to ensure the safety of you and your family.
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There are a number of protective orders that can be granted by a court. Some of which are emergency protective orders, criminal protective orders, restraining orders, stay away orders, temporary restraining orders and move-out orders.
Emergency Protective Order (EPO)
An order issued at the time of a domestic violence arrest by a Judge, Commissioner, or other judicial officer on the request of a police officer, sheriff’s deputy or other law enforcement officer. The EPO restrains the arrested person from having contact or communication with the protected person and is valid for five (5) to seven (7) days; until the person arrested for domestic battery, criminal threats or stalking has first appeared in court at the arraignment.
Criminal Protective Order (CPO)
A CPO or a “no contact order” is issued in active domestic violence cases through the district attorney’s office . Once a CPO is issued, the alleged abuser cannot contact you through e-mail, letters, notes, or call you on the phone. A CPO is issued to a “restrained person;” someone who has already been arrested, charged, or convicted for committing a crime against a victim.
Restraining Order (RO)
An RO is obtained by submitting to a court a signed affidavit alleging facts about why they feel threatened by someone else. Once filed, a temporary RO that is in effect for 10 days will be issued. A hearing will also be set to determine if the RO needs to be extended. You can introduce evidence of abuse or threats against you and your family at this hearing. You should file for an RO if the district attorney has issued a CPO for you for continued protection. Once an RO is issued, the restrained person must relinquish ownership of any firearms in their possession, vacate any shared-living space, avoid all contact with you and your family, and can be picked up on suspicion of violating the RO. An RO can last up to three years. If a restrained person violates the terms of the order at any time during this period, he could be arrested, prosecuted, and sent to jail.
Stay Away Order (SAO)
A SAO is issued at the first court appearance of a domestic violence or criminal case arraignment. It is valid while the court has jurisdiction over the criminal domestic battery case. If a person is convicted of domestic battery, domestic assault or a related charge such as criminal threats or stalking, the court will have jurisdiction over the person who has suffered an arrest for domestic violence until probation has been completed. Probation in a domestic abuse case typically lasts three (3) years from the date of conviction.
Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
A TRO is obtained upon request by a an individual who has made a domestic abuse complaint. It is not necessary for a domestic battery, domestic assault, criminal threats or stalking report to have been made with the police. However, it is common for a person who has filed a police report to also seek a TRO. If the person accused of domestic abuse, criminal threats or stalking had been involved in a dating relationship with the accuser at any time in the past, a Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO) may be obtained. If the person accused of stalking had not been involved in a dating relationship at any time in the past, a No Harassment Order may be sought.
A spouse cannot be forced to move out of the family residence unless the court issues a restraining order against that spouse providing for their exclusion from the residence. To seek a restraining order to exclude a spouse from his or her home you must prove an act of domestic violence has been committed by that spouse. Once determined, that spouse can then be ordered to be removed from the residence. If domestic violence cannot be demonstrated, the court cannot make such an order and the spouse remains in the home.
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