What Rights Do You Have with a Restraining Order?
Do you know what a restraining order is? While most people know that they are available for people who are victims of domestic abuse, stalking, and other crimes, they are able to do more than that. It is also possible to get one of these orders for those who are facing civil harassment. Many do not know much about the orders beyond those elements though. For example, do you know how to file a restraining order? Do you know what the burden of proof is or what rights you have when you have a restraining order against someone? It is important to understand all of these different elements.
The biggest reason that people get restraining orders is as a means to help protect against domestic violence. The violence can include a variety of different types of crimes, including assault, harassment, sexual assault, criminal trespass, lewdness, burglary, terroristic threats, false imprisonment, and more. In the state of California, the abuser needs to be a boyfriend or girlfriend, spouse or former spouse, live-in companion or parent of your child.
Filing for a Restraining Order
Those who want to file for a restraining order will want to visit their local county court. In the state of California, you will need to fill out the forms for domestic violence (DV-100 and DV-110). You can actually find the forms online and then simply turn them in to the court clerk. A judge will then look at the forms and determine if you have grounds to receive a restraining order. The judge has one business day to make this decision.
You can return to the court to see if the judge agreed to your request. You will then receive five copies of the temporary restraining order. This is good for three weeks, and you should always keep a copy on you. You also have to serve the abuser with the order. Anyone who is over 18, except for the person who took out the order, can serve the paperwork to the abuser. Law enforcement officials may do it as well.
You will soon receive an appointment for a hearing so you can ask for a permanent restraining order, which will usually last from 3 – 5 years. Once the judge signs it, it is in effect, although you still have to send it through the court clerk.
What Does the Order Do?
When you have a restraining order, it will prevent the abuser from coming to your home, work, or school, and keeps them from coming within a certain distance of you, calling you on the phone, emailing and texting you.
The judge might also order the abuser, if he or she brings in the majority of the income, to continue paying bills, such as rent and mortgage. In order to have these other conditions met, it is important to talk to the judge about them and request them. Working with an attorney who has experience in this field can be helpful to ensure that you do everything properly. Talk with an attorney to learn more about these types of orders as well as what the benefits might be for you. If you are in a dangerous situation, the order really can be very helpful.