If you need a protective order, you probably have many questions about the process. There are several steps you should be aware of.
Seeking a protective order
A protective order is a legal order to protect individuals who have suffered from abuse or violence. There are several reasons why a person may seek a protective order to keep the abuser from coming near them or contacting them.
Often, if a person has experienced domestic abuse, such as physical, emotional, or sexual abuse from a domestic partner they may seek a protective order. Their abuser could be a spouse, former spouse, family member or household member.
Also, someone who is being stalked may also want a protective order. Stalking includes unwanted contact, harassment or threats that happen repeatedly. It can also extend to cyberstalking and a protective order can prevent the abuser from contacting them online.
Victims can also experience harassment and abuse in the workplace or may be a victim of assault. Other matters may qualify for a protective order as well.
Petitioning the court
First, the person who is seeking the protective order will need to file a petition with the court. Then, the court will hold a hearing to obtain evidence about the abuse or violence. The court may also ask questions of the petitioner.
If the judge finds that the petitioner is in immediate danger, they can order a temporary order. Then, they will hold a final hearing and enter an order that is valid for a specific period of time.
The victim can report to the court if the abuser violates the terms of the order.