Complete Guide to a Temporary Protective Order California
A temporary protective order can help victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking receive protection from their abuser. Learn if you qualify.
What Is a Protective Order?
If you fear for your safety and wellbeing, you may wish to pursue the security of a domestic violence protective order. A judge or commissioner can issue a protective order to protect people from abuse. It can be a civil or criminal order and is typically issued against someone who has been accused of domestic violence or physical abuse, sexual assault, harassment, or stalking.
Protective orders are also called “restraining orders” in some states. Protective orders prohibit the accused from contacting the victim or coming near them until the court decides whether the victim should be given a permanent protective order. A temporary order can provide a person with immediate protection.
Under California law, the terms restraining order and protection order are used interchangeably. There is no difference between them. Contact a Los Angeles restraining order attorney for legal assistance and more information.
Types of Protective Orders in California
If you are in immediate and present danger, a law enforcement officer responding to a domestic violence call will likely arrest the suspect. Only a judge can ensure that a person seeking protection remains safe from physical injury. Fortunately, the California penal code and the family court system have options to fit nearly every domestic violence case.
Therefore, there are three types of protective orders in California. These are:
- Emergency protective order
- Temporary restraining order
- Permanent restraining order
A reputable attorney can help you file for a temporary restraining order and prepare for the hearing to obtain a permanent restraining order.
Emergency Protective Order
An emergency protective order can be issued according to the California law Family Code section 6250. This law allows a law enforcement officer to call a judge and request for an emergency restraining order to be issued to you if they believe you are in imminent or present danger of domestic violence. It can be filed within 24 hours of the incident.
During the application process for a temporary restraining order, an emergency protective order ensures that any violence, abuse and abduction of children, or abuse of dependent adults or elders is prevented.
Emergency protective orders can last only five business days or seven calendar days, whichever is shorter. This is because you are supposed to use an emergency protective order as a temporary measure to go to court to get a domestic violence restraining order.
Temporary Restraining Order
A temporary restraining order is issued by a judge who believes the person requesting protection is in immediate danger and needs continued protection until the court can hear the details of the case.
A temporary restraining order lasts for 20 to 25 days, after which a court hearing determines whether a “permanent” restraining order will be issued.
Permanent Restraining Order
To obtain a permanent restraining order, a hearing will be scheduled. The hearing is scheduled whether you obtained a temporary restraining order or not. A judge determines whether the person requesting a restraining order is truly in need of one. Following the court hearing, a judge may grant you a permanent restraining order.
The length of time varies based on the restraining order. Where a civil harassment restraining order is valid for only three years, a domestic violence restraining order is valid for five.
Domestic violence restraining orders can be requested online or in person. If requested online, a temporary ex-parte order will be issued electronically.
If you need additional information or advice regarding domestic violence restraining orders, contact the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney.
Filing a Temporary Protective Order in California
The first step in filing a temporary protective order is to go to court and submit the petition to the court clerk. Domestic violence restraining orders and any forms related to them do not require a fee. Your attorney will be able to help you with these steps.
Although you can file a restraining order without a lawyer, the abuser might hire a Los Angeles criminal defense attorney to fight the restraining order or its conditions. You may wish to have a lawyer present at all proceedings.
What Happens When a Temporary Protective Order Expires?
When a protective order expires, the victim and the defendant are released from it. The judge can extend the order for five more years or permanently during the last three months of the order. This extension does not require further proof of abuse on your part.
If the protected person wants to request a final protective order, they must appear in court. The judge will issue a final protective order indefinitely if the defendant fails to appear in court.
Retaining a California Criminal Attorney
With several options available to satisfy your particular circumstances, consider retaining the services of a reputable law firm. A trusted restraining order lawyer can help you determine whether you need a civil harassment or domestic violence restraining order and help you prepare for your court hearing.
The Law Offices of Christopher Chaney is here to help you follow the procedures required to get a restraining order and advocate for your rights and safety in court. Contact a federal criminal defense attorney for a free consultation about your circumstances.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a Hearing Required for a Temporary Restraining Order for Protection in California?
A hearing for a temporary restraining order for protection in California is not required. The process can be completed by filing the petition, requesting an ex-parte order, and serving the respondent with the order. If you are granted an ex-parte order, it will be served on the respondent without revealing your personal information.
What Happens if the Restrained Person Violates the Protective Order?
Los Angeles, CA, rules are stringent on implementing all restraining order laws. The consequences of violating a protective order depend on whether it is civil or criminal.
If the restrained person violates the domestic violence protective order, they can be arrested and charged with criminal contempt. If someone violates a civil protective order, they will have to pay fines and/or serve jail time for their actions.
Criminal violations are punished more severely than civil violations because they involve breaking the law.
A judge may sentence someone who has violated a criminal protective order to up to six months in jail for each violation of an injunction that prohibits harassment or threats against another person.
How Long Do Temporary Protective Orders Last in California?
The maximum lengths for protective orders are the following:
- An emergency protective order lasts up to 5 business days or 7 calendar days, whichever is shorter.
- A temporary restraining order lasts up to 20 – 25 days.
- A domestic violence restraining order can last up to 5 years, while a
- A civil harassment restraining order is valid for up to 3 years.
In certain situations, California domestic violence and civil harassment restraining orders can be extended or reissued during a new hearing date if needed.
For experienced legal representation, contact the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney for a free consultation.