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How can I get a permanent domestic violence restraining order?

If you are in a relationship that has become dangerous, a domestic violence restraining order may help protect you and others from abuse. A domestic violence restraining order is a court order that can prohibit your abuser from contacting you and require him or her to abide by other terms appropriate to your specific situation.

A permanent domestic violence restraining order is not truly permanent. However, this type or restraining order can last much longer than an emergency protective order or a temporary restraining order. A permanent restraining order can last up to five years, and if necessary, you may apply to renew the restraining order after it has expired.

What a restraining order can do

A domestic violence restraining order can require your abuser to pay certain bills, move out of a shared home, pay spousal support, pay child support, return certain property and/or complete a batterer intervention program. A restraining order can also prohibit your abuser from:

  • Contacting you, your children, your relatives and those who live with you
  • Going near locations you frequent, such as your home, your work and your child’s daycare or school
  • Making changes to insurance policies
  • Making large purchases
  • Possessing a gun

Although a restraining order can include several terms to keep you safe, a restraining order does not end your marriage or domestic partnership. If you want to legally end your relationship, you must take separate actions to seek divorce.

The process for getting a restraining order

Different types of restraining orders are appropriate for different situations. To qualify for a domestic violence restraining order, you must have a close relationship with your abuser. This could mean that you and your abuser are:

  • Dating or used to date
  • Living together or used to live together
  • Married
  • Registered domestic partners
  • Separated or divorced
  • Parents together
  • Family members, such as parent and child or brother and sister

If you have a qualifying relationship with your abuser, you may ask a judge for a domestic violence restraining order. This process involves filling out paperwork, going to court and explaining to the judge why you think you need a restraining order.

At the judge’s discretion, you may receive a temporary restraining order. Temporary restraining orders usually only last until the date of the court hearing.

At the court hearing, your abuser may be given the opportunity to share his or her side with the judge. However, your abuser will not be allowed to speak to you. The judge will decide at this hearing if he or she will grant the permanent restraining order or not.

No one deserves to experience abuse or fear of abuse. If you are experiencing domestic abuse, filing for a permanent domestic violence restraining order may be one of several appropriate steps you can take to protect yourself.

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Law Office of Layla Summers
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Phone: 310-575-2513
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