If you’re a victim of domestic violence, one of the things you may want to know is what kind of legal protections there are for you. The most common protection is a protective order. This is an order that requires the accused abuser to stay away from you, your home, your school and your workplace.
This order also makes it clear that the individual is not to have contact with you in any way. You can ask for a protective order whenever you want one. If the abuser violates the terms of the order, he or she can be arrested and taken to jail. Violating a protective order is contempt of court and will be charged as a misdemeanor.
A protective order isn’t foolproof, and there are surely people who violate them and harm their victims again. A protective order is a good deterrent, however, since the penalties are serious. If you feel you are in immediate danger despite a protective order, the police may be able to patrol in your neighborhood or around your home to make sure you remain safe while awaiting a hearing or trial. Some people choose to relocate temporarily along with the protective order.
No one deserves to be a victim of violence, and a protective order is the first step to breaking free of a dangerous situation. Once an order is in place, you should be able to avoid the aggressor and stay safer in your home or a new location. Our site has more on what to do if you’re facing abuse and need help.