If you feel unsafe around someone, you may decide to get a restraining order. A restraining order prohibits the person from coming within a certain distance of you. Learn everything you need to know about restraining orders, including how to file for one.
What is a Restraining Order?
A restraining order is a protective order that prohibits a person from engaging with another person. Restraining orders are most commonly used following an alleged domestic dispute. Victims of domestic violence or child abuse may file a restraining order against the aggressor to avoid danger.
Who Can Request a Domestic Violence Restraining Order?
Filing for a restraining comes with a few requirements, including:
- The alleged abuser must have committed assault, harassment, criminal mischief, kidnapping, false imprisonment, criminal restraint, or any other related crime that threatens a person’s safety
- The alleged abuser must be at least 18 years of age
Additionally, the victim must meet one of the following requirements:
- Married or previously married to the abuser
- Shared children with the abuser
- Currently pregnant with the abuser’s child
- Previously lived with the abuser
- Been in a relationship with the abuser when both were over 18 years of age
A domestic violence restraining order requires the victim to have had a relationship with the abuser. Some unique situations may still qualify for a domestic violence restraining order.
How to Get a Restraining Order
It’s important to file for a restraining order as soon as possible, as it can take some time to process. Additionally, if you wait to file for a restraining order until long after the threat presents itself, the court may question why you waited.
You can request a temporary restraining order by visiting your nearest police department. You can also request possession of shared children, important documents, your home, and your vehicle with a temporary restraining order. If approved, you should always keep a copy of the restraining order on you. Make a few extra copies, so you always have the information available.
The court will also provide a copy to the abuser, so they know there’s an active restraining order in place. If they ignore the restraining order, you can notify the police and show them a copy.
A temporary restraining order is temporary. This means you’ll also need to prepare for your final hearing, which is when the judge will decide if a permanent restraining order should be in place. A hearing date and time will be listed on your temporary restraining order so you know how long you have to prepare.
In the meantime, it may be worth it to reach out to a lawyer. You’ll need sufficient evidence to prove that a restraining order is important for your or your child’s safety. During the final hearing, you’ll present your evidence. If a final restraining order is granted, the defendant is no longer allowed to make contact with you.
Discuss your options with a lawyer if your restraining order isn’t granted and you fear for your or your child’s safety. An appeal may be an option but requires a motion for reconsideration.
Contact a Moorestown Family Law Attorney for a Consultation About Restraining Orders in New Jersey Today
If you are thinking about pursuing a restraining order, you need to speak with a qualified attorney. The New Jersey attorneys at Attorneys Hartman, Chartered represent clients throughout the state, including Moorestown, Cherry Hill, Mt. Laurel, and Medford. We understand how challenging this time can be for you, which is why we will fight hard to protect your interests, and the interests of your loved ones, throughout the legal process. Call us at 856-393-6073 or fill out our confidential contact form to schedule a consultation. We have an office conveniently located at 68 E Main St, Moorestown, NJ 08057.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.