If you have been threatened or harmed by a loved one, you may be living in fear. A cycle of abuse can get progressively worse, leading to serious physical harm. This can be a scary situation for a victim, and you may be worried about your future. Are there any protections available to you under the law?
Those who are in unsafe situations due to an abusive parent, romantic partner, or a family member can get a restraining order in New York. A restraining order prohibits the offender from contacting the victim in any way. If they do so, they can face criminal penalties.
When to Get a Restraining Order
Do you qualify for a New York State order of protection? You can request an order of protection if you are being abused by a family member or intimate partner (current or former). If someone is stalking you or harassing you, you may also get an order of protection, whether or not you are related to the person in any way.
To file a petition, you need to file a form called a Family Offense petition and file it in the city, justice or district court near you. While you do not need an attorney to file the petition, it may be helpful to consult with one prior to filing.
If you are found to be in immediate harm, you may be given a temporary restraining order, which would last until a hearing is held. To keep the order in place, you will need to attend the hearing. The judge will then decide if you qualify for an order of protection. It may last for weeks, months, years or even permanently.
Modifying a Restraining Order
There are two main types of restraining orders in New York. A temporary order of protection lasts from one court date to another, until a judge can make a decision. A final order of protection may be issued by a judge. This type of restraining order can last up to several years, depending on how serious the situation is. The order of protection will end if the case is dismissed.
Most restraining orders last for several years. However, there are situations in which you may wish to shorten the period of time. This may happen, for example, if the person no longer poses a threat to the victim. While the victim can request the modification, the judge ultimately is the one to approve it.
Contact a Family Law Attorney Today
Relationships are supposed to be loving experiences, but sometimes a person can become violent, mentally or physically. This can cause the victim to fear for his or her life. In these situations, victims can protect themselves with a family law restraining order.
Many people are injured or even killed in domestic violence situations. Do not let this happen to you. Brooklyn family law attorney Theodore Alatsas ESQ can help protect you so that you do not become a statistic. We have options that can help. To schedule a consultation, contact our office at (718) 233-2903 today.