California Restraining Order Attorney
An attorney can help you file one or defend you if you have been restrained
Restraining orders in California (sometimes called protective orders) are orders with a court that restrains one person from doing certain activities, and protects another. Their purpose is to prevent one party from being physically abused, threatened, stalked, harassed or otherwise harmed. Restraining orders can be either Temporary Restraining Orders (TROs) or permanent orders. A TRO is an emergency order that a court issues when there are reasonable grounds to believe one person is in immediate and present danger of physical or emotional harm, including stalking. Reasonable grounds can be based on proof of current and past acts. A TRO or emergency order will remain in place until a hearing can be held to determine its validity. A court will then decide whether to lift the order or issue a permanent order. Permanent orders can last for five years, although they generally are issued for up to three years. They can be extended if justified by the circumstances of the case.
How do I file a restraining order in California?
A restraining order is issued after a person who needs protection files a petition with the Superior Court in his or her county explaining why they are in immediate and present danger of harm. If it is approved by the court, it will restrain the opposing party from any kind of specific harmful conduct directed towards the victim. This can include:
- Contacting, calling or sending any messages (including emails)
- Attacking or striking or battering
- Stalking or harassing
- Destroying the personal property or disturbing the peace of the victim
- Approaching the victim within a certain distance, as well as his or her residence, car, workplace or other property
Restraining orders can also extend protection to the victim’s family and children, his or her residence and vehicle, the victim’s business or children’s schools, and other important places. A restrained person who lives with the victim protected by the order can be forced to move out. A violation of the restraining order by the person it is meant to restrict can result in his or her arrest and imprisonment.
What do I do if a restraining order has been filed against me in California?
The first and most important step is to discontinue any activity that the order states. If an order states you are to stay a certain distance away from a particular person, do not approach them or contact them even to ask them a question, as this would be a direct violation of the order. The penalties for violating a restraining order vary in California depending on the circumstances of the case. However, a violation that is a misdemeanor is punishable by up to a year in prison. Felony violations receive as much as three years in prison. Once you discontinue the conduct outlined in the order, contact a lawyer who has experience with restraining orders in California. If you receive notice of a temporary restraining order against you, you will also receive a hearing date which will be held within the following two to three weeks to determine whether the temporary order must be made permanent. An experienced attorney will guide you through the process and explain both your rights and responsibilities.
A restraining order needs an experienced California lawyer
Someone who believes they require a restraining order or someone who has received notice of an order against them in California should contact an experienced lawyer to explain the court process and ensure their rights are protected. Call attorney Sherry Lee Collins today at 951-784-6150 or contact her online to deal with these matters as soon as possible.