What does a Domestic Violence Order Mean?
Person arrested for acts involving domestic violence or who strikes, kicks, shoves, or touches a person subjecting him or her to physical contact may not be permitted bail until after an appearance before judge within 12 hours of their arrest. What this means is is that each person arrested will serve at least 12 hours in jail before being permitted bond. The court also issue a restraining order to prevent further domestic violence. The purpose of the statute is to assure victims of domestic violence the maximum protection from abuse and to provide a flexible and speedy remedy to discourage violence and harassment against family members. It also expands the ability of law enforcement to assist victims.
Abuse has been defined as an assault. This means any striking, shoving, hitting or otherwise unlawful touching or person subjecting them to physical contact. It also covers any “attempt” to commit an assault. It covers child abuse, harassment, kidnapping, or menacing, reckless endangerment, sexual abuse, stalking, theft, trespass, and unlawful imprisonment.
A person charged with domestic violence has the right to a hearing within 14 days. The defendant may be represented by counsel. The court may enter such temporary orders as it deems necessary to protect the plaintiff for the minor children from abuse or the immediate and present danger abuse the plaintiff or the minor children.
At the hearing the court may grant the following relief to the Plaintiff:
- To enjoin the defendant from threating to commit or committing acts of abuse against the plaintiff or the minor children or any designated family or household member.
- Prohibit defendant from harassing, annoying, telephoning, contacting or otherwise communicating directly or indirectly with the plaintiff for the minor children.
- Order the defendant to stay away from the residence, school, place of employment of the plaintiff or the minor children or any other person place frequented by the plaintiff or the minor children.
- Award temporary custody of any minor children of the parties.
- Enjoin the defendant from interfering with the plaintiff’s efforts to remove the children and direct law enforcement officers to accompany the plaintiff to remove the children as necessary to protect the plaintiff and the children from abuse.
- Enjoin the defendant from removing the minor children from the individual having legal custody of the minor children.
- Remove and exclude the defendant from the residence of the plaintiff regardless of the ownership of the residence.
- Direct law enforcement officers accompany the plaintiff residence of the parties to protect plaintiff or children from abuse.
- Or grant other relief as may be necessary to provide for the safety and welfare of the plaintiff or the minor children.
- Prohibited defendant from transferring, concealing, encumbering otherwise disposing of specified property mutually owned or leased by the parties.
As you can see the powers of the court are directed to controlling the domestic relationship between the parties. Running afoul of the the domestic violence law can have far-reaching consequences beyond the moment and effect any pending or future divorce proceeding filed.
You will need to be in touch with someone experienced in handling domestic relations and domestic violence cases, so please call me to discuss the specifics of your case and avoid the trouble a domestic violence charge may bring.