Has your spouse, a romantic partner, or a family member obtained a domestic violence restraining order against you? If so, you probably have a lot of questions, especially if you’ve never been named in a restraining order before. What do you have to stop doing? What are the conditions? What happens if you violate the order? What are the effects of the restraining order?
Domestic violence restraining orders in California are court orders that protect victims of domestic violence or threats of abuse from someone, such as a spouse, romantic partner, or relative who they have a close relationship with. Was a domestic violence restraining order issued against you? If so, the protected person may have obtained the order for any of the following reasons:
- You abused the protected person;
- You threatened to harm the protected person; AND
- You have a close relationship with the person protected in the order.
If you are accused of abusing your child, the child’s other parent may have filed for a restraining order on behalf of your child (and perhaps other family members). If your son or daughter is 12-years-old or older, he or she has the right to file their own restraining order against you.
Effects of a Domestic Violence Restraining Order
Restraining orders are court orders. If there is a restraining order issued against you, there are several things it may do, such as order you to:
- Not contact or go near the people named in the order, including your children;
- Stay away from the victims’ home or work;
- Stay away from your children’s schools;
- Move out of your own home;
- Not have any firearms;
- Obey child custody orders;
- Financially support your dependents;
- Stay away from the family pets;
- Transfer the cell phone rights to the victim in the order;
- Pay certain household bills;
- Not change any insurance policies;
- Release certain property in your possession; and
- Complete a 52-week domestic violence course.
A restraining order can do many things, but it can’t do everything. For example, it cannot end a couple’s marriage or domestic partnership because it is NOT a divorce. Additionally, a restraining order cannot establish paternity. A violation of a domestic violence restraining order could result in arrest and criminal charges.
Next: Can I Be Deported for Domestic Violence?
Are you responding to a restraining order? If so, it is difficult for such people to obtain free or low-cost legal services when they are accused of domestic violence. Our advice is to contact our firm to schedule a free case evaluation with a defense lawyer.