Domestic violence is defined as a threat or actual abuse from someone in your family or in your home with whom you have close relationship.


What should I do if there is domestic violence?

Most importantly the person needs to get away from the aggressor and contact the police (“911”) immediately. If you need help right now, you may be able to obtain Emergency Protective Orders. A police officer responding to a domestic violence can call a judge and ask for an emergency protective order that goes into effect immediately and can last up to 7 days. You will need to explain to the police officer the abuser’s actions and why you are afraid.


Besides an emergency protective order a victim of the domestic violence can also pursue through the court Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and subsequently get a Permanent Restraining Order, usually for 3-5 years, if the Court finds that there was physical harm and/or threat of harm in the future to the person and/or the children.


Restraining order can tell an abuser to stop calling you, move out, stay away from where you live or work, give up a gun, limit the time he/she spends with the children and whether this time should be supervised; release or return certain property, or pay some or all of your attorney fees.


You do NOT need to get a divorce to obtain a restraining order.


If there is a restraining order against me protecting my spouse and the children, can I still contact my spouse on the issues pertaining to the child custody and visitation?

You must follow the restraining order. If there is no visitation provided by the restraining order, then you cannot contact the other parent. Some restraining orders provide for peaceful contact pertaining to the issues of visitation, if the latter is ordered. Some court orders provide for peaceful contact via Talking Parent’s or text/email pertaining to the child visitation.



Can I re-file a TRO if a previous one was denied?

One can always re-file the TRO by alleging different or new facts, that were not listed in the TRO that was already denied.


Can I cancel a Restraining Order if it was requested by another person?



Can I get a restraining order of there is no domestic violence?

A court may issue a DVTRO if a party proves that the party against whom the DVTRO is sought directly or indirectly disturbs the peace of the other party.