Victim Protective Orders
As an American citizen, you deserve the right to protect yourself or your child against dangerous individuals. You should not have to live in fear of potential and former abusers and harassers. One step you can take to prevent a potentially dangerous situation is to file a protective order. A victim protective order is a court-issued document that legally prohibits your abuser or stalker from contacting you or engaging in the unwanted conduct.
Types of Protective Orders
There are three types of protective orders which vary in how long they take effect. A protective order is intended to protect you against domestic abuse from family or household members, including people with whom you have had a past relationship.
Emergency Temporary Protective Order
Emergency temporary protective orders are for emergency situations outside of court hours.
Emergency Ex-Parte Protective Order
These are filed during normal court hours and last until the hearing for your final protective order.
Final Protective Order
Unlike an emergency ex-parte protective order, a final protective order requires a court hearing, where the person you are filing the order against is present. A final protective order is more permanent, lasting three years, and can also be extended.
How Do I Get a Protective Order and How Much Do They Cost?
Normally, there are no costs associated with filing a protective order. In order to request a petition for a final protective order, you must go to the nearest district court. If you are in any immediate danger, let the court clerk know that you would like an emergency ex-parte order. You can also find online petitions HERE. Be sure to bring your identification to the courthouse, and fill out necessary information honestly and in detail. In many cases, the court clerk or an advocate can help you fill out the required forms. The judge will review your petition and will set a date for the hearing for your final protective order.
Stalking Protective Orders
If the person you would like to file a protective order against does not qualify as a “family or household” member, you can file a stalking protective order against them. Stalking is defined as behavior in which a person “willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows or harasses another in a manner that causes a person to feel frightened, intimidated, threatened, etc.” The process for filing a stalking protective order is generally the same as filing a final protective order.
Do I Need a Family Lawyer?
A lawyer is not required in order to file a protective order. However, it is highly recommended that you have experienced and competent legal representation, especially if the person you are filing against is using an attorney.
Contact Jones Brown Law
Domestic abuse, harassment, and stalking are all very serious matters. If you wish to file a protective order for yourself or for your child, the experienced family lawyers of Jones Brown Law can assist you through each step. If you’re facing a situation where you need a family law attorney, you need someone who understands not only the legal complexities of the issues but also understands the emotions and personal feelings of everyone involved. To contact Jones Brown Law, click HERE.