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Protective Order

What is a protective order?

A protective order is a civil court order that is designed to stop violent and harassing behavior and to protect you and your family members from an abuser. Abusers who violate certain parts of a protective order can be arrested.

How can a protective order help me?

The purpose of a protective order is to prevent future assaults by your partner. The protective order will usually make it illegal for him/her to be near you, your children, your home, your workplace, and your children’s school. Then you can call the police for help when he/she is where he/she is not supposed to be and the police can intervene before he/she assaults you or your children again.

A protective order may order your abuser to:

  • Stop committing acts of family or dating violence.
  • Stop communicating with you or a family member.
  • Stop threatening you or a family member.
  • Stay away from your home or place of employment.
  • Stay away from a school or day center that a child protected under the order attends.
  • Complete a battering intervention and prevention program.
  • Attend mandatory counseling.
  • Not remove your child from your possession or from the jurisdiction of the court or to allow you visitation with your child.
  • Stop any transfer or disposal of property.
  • Stop any other behavior designed to harass, annoy, abuse, or embarrass you.
  • Pay child or spousal support for a period up to two years.
  • Leave your home or other specified property (if certain conditions are met).
  • Turn over any firearms in his/her possession to law enforcement (unless the person is a peace officer actively engaged in employment as a sworn, full-time paid employee of a state agency).
  • Perform any other acts that are necessary to prevent or reduce the likelihood of family or dating violence.