Restraining Orders

When domestic violence occurs, the courts issue restraining orders to bar the abuser from having further contact with their victim. Domestic violence includes threats or acts of violence against a spouse, child, or other member of the household, and restraining orders are issued when there is an immediate and present danger of domestic violence against one of those persons. Civil and criminal penalties can then be imposed for any contact after the restraining order is issued.

Someone that’s been the victim of or fears domestic violence should call 911 if they feel they are in immediate danger and contact an attorney as quickly as possible in all situations. A domestic violence victim can obtain a temporary restraining order from the court by making a sworn statement that facts constituting domestic violence occurred. The perpetrator will then be notified not to contact the victim and a hearing will be held to determine if a final order of protection will be issued. A final order of protection may bar any contact or only specific acts and may contain provisions for facilitating things like child visitation or support payments while the order is in effect.

The restrictions imposed by restraining orders cause the courts to take their issuance very seriously. Sometimes, a spouse will make false allegations of domestic violence in an attempt to gain an advantage in other divorce proceedings. This is why a hearing is held before the issuance of a final order of protection. Someone who believes a false complaint was made against them should attend the hearing with an attorney to avoid restrictions being placed on their life. If a court determines a complaint has no basis, it won’t issue a restraining order and may impose civil or criminal penalties on the complainant if it finds they knowingly made false statements.

If you need a lawyer to enforce your restraining order or to protect you from a false accusation of domestic violence in Santa Rosa, Windsor, or Petaluma in Sonoma County, contact Brian Lanz at The Family Law Office today – (707) 523-4419.