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The process of getting a domestic violence restraining order

On Behalf of | May 10, 2024 | Family Law |

If you are dealing with domestic violence in California, obtaining a restraining order can be a critical step in protecting yourself and your family. Understanding the steps involved can help you navigate this challenging situation more effectively.

Understand what a restraining order can do

A domestic violence restraining order in California can require the abuser to stop harassing or abusing you. It may also make them move out of your home, stay away from you and your children, and avoid any contact with you. Additionally, it can impact custody of children and set visitation rules.

Determine the right type of restraining order

California provides several types of restraining orders based on urgency and situation. Police at the scene can issue Emergency Protective Orders (EPO), which last for about five to seven days. Courts typically issue Temporary Restraining Orders (TRO), which can last until your court hearing, usually a few weeks later.

Collect evidence of abuse

You must gather evidence to support your case. This includes photographs of injuries, text messages, emails, or witness statements that show abuse patterns. Keeping detailed records of all incidents with dates and descriptions will strengthen your application.

File a petition at your local court

Go to your local court to file for a restraining order. You will need to fill out the required forms, which are often available online for preparation ahead of time. When describing the incidents of abuse, be thorough and clear to articulate your need for protection clearly.

Attend the court hearing

You will receive a court hearing date after filing. At this hearing, both you and the abuser will have the chance to present your cases. Prepare your evidence well and consider having legal representation to help you effectively present your case.

Protecting yourself through legal means

To obtain a domestic violence restraining order in California, you need to prepare carefully and communicate clearly, and understanding the process can make this stressful situation easier to handle.