Unfortunately, many family law disputes involve domestic violence or threats of domestic violence. These acts may necessitate a restraining order or order of protection. The courts have no tolerance for domestic violence and provide streamlined processes for victims to easily pursue the protection that they need. Terms of a Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining order, or a Protection Order can vary to meet the necessary safety needs. The law allows you to obtain protection from domestic violence without having to file for a divorce or legal separation first. A restraining order is a court order that tells the person who hurt you (the “respondent”) to leave you and your children alone. It can tell the respondent to move from your home and can deal with temporary custody and parenting time of your children. It can also require the respondent to stay away from your home, school, place of employment, or your children’s day care provider, and other provisions that you think will help you stay safe. You also can ask the court to include an order that says the respondent cannot have guns.
However, these types of orders can only deal with custody and parenting time issues temporarily. To get “permanent” custody and parenting time orders, you need to a file a family law case, such as a divorce or a custody case. If you are afraid for your safety or the safety of your children because of a domestic violence situation, the attorneys at McKean Smith can assist you through the process of getting the court-ordered protection you need.