Tag Archives: domestic violence

BEYOND THE PAPERWORK: PRACTICAL ADVICE FOR OBTAINING A PROTECTION ORDER

When you seek an order of protection, you should be fully aware of the gravity of the request and its legal consequences.  An order of protection (or restraining order, protection order, or no-contact order, depending the jurisdiction and relationship of the parties) is a court-issued document that prohibits an individual (the respondent/defendant) from directly contacting the petitioner/victim.  Protection orders are frequently filed to prevent acts or threats of domestic violence, stalking, and harassment, although they can be used to bar other types of abusive or menacing behavior.

A protection order must be issued by a court.   A petitioner may seek … Read More

THE TREND TOWARD INCLUDING PETS IN PROTECTIVE RESTRAINING ORDERS

In recognition of social and criminal justice data, state courts are enforcing protective orders that include animals.  23 states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, have enacted laws that allow pets to be included in protective orders (AZ; AK; CA; CO; CT; HI; IL; LA; ME; MD; MA; MN; NV; NJ; NY; NC; OK; OR; TN; TX; VT; WA; WV).

 Victims of domestic violence often delay departure from abusive relationships to prevent animal abuse.  Offenders who commit domestic violence often threaten to harm or kill a family pet to prevent a victim from leaving, or punish … Read More

Orders of Protection

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Are you being threatened with domestic violence, harassed, or stalked? Do you know someone who is? Every state has some form of legal order that requires someone to stay away from you or your home, stop contacting you, and stop sending you gifts. These orders may be called Order of Protection, Protective Order, Restraining Order, No-Contact Order, or a similar name. The order is not automatic; the person seeking the order must appear before a judge and present evidence of threats or abuse. If the judge issues the order, a person who violates the order may be arrested.

The procedure … Read More

Services for Crime Victims

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With the Trayvon Martin case, including the recent second degree murder charges against George Zimmerman making national news, violent crime is at the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. The Martin/Zimmerman case has raised questions about who the true victim really was. Although we may not know the answer to that question until the case has been resolved, unfortunately there are thousands of crimes committed every day, leaving victims to deal with the  aftermath. Often there is so much focus on the perpetrators of crime that the victim gets somewhat left behind by court systems. However, more and more courts are … Read More

State Attorneys General Provide Legal Resources and Legal Research for Free

Generally when we hear about state attorneys general in the news, it is because they are suing tobacco companies, or defending high-profile state laws in court. But state attorneys general (“SAGs”) can also be a good resource for guidance on everyday legal issues. SAGs are tasked with providing legal protection to their state’s residents, which means pursuing big lawsuits sometimes, but also providing guidance on issues such as consumer fraud, elder abuse, and victims’ rights.

The websites of various SAGs provide a variety of resources. The Arizona SAG site, has a section on what to do about annoying telemarketers … Read More

CourtReference: Your Guide to Free Legal Help

Are you experiencing legal trouble and unsure of how to proceed? Do you need a lawyer but think you cannot afford one? You might be surprised at the number of free or low-cost legal services available in your state and how easy it is to find them through CourtReference.

Legal aid and legal referral services may be offered by state government, county government, or private organizations. Some agencies offer general legal services, such as help with most non-criminal matters. Others offer specialized services for a group of people, such as senior citizens or victims of domestic violence, or a … Read More

Protection Order and Restraining Order Records

Protection Orders come in different varieties. A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) is usually granted after an ex parte hearing (only one party is present in court). A TRO provides that one party must refrain from certain acts, or stay a certain distance away from a particular person or place. Once the TRO is granted, a copy of the TRO must be served on the person who is to be restrained. The TRO remains in effect until the hearing for a request for a permanent Restraining Order, which is usually 15-20 days after the TRO hearing. A permanent Restraining Order can … Read More

Internet Security and Domestic Violence

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There is a wealth of information and resources available online that are designed to assist survivors of domestic violence with a range of legal issues, including child custody, safety planning and immigration.

There is also a serious warning about internet security related to using the internet to find help for protection from abuse. If the person that you are afraid of has access to the computer used to look for help, several organizations suggest deleting your browser history and taking additional steps to increase the security and safety of using the internet.

WomensLaw.org offers a comprehensive explanation of … Read More