New Jersey Protective Order Lawyer
A New Jersey protective order, also known as a restraining order, is a court order which prohibits one individual from coming within a certain distance of another individual for a specified period of time. A protective order is oftentimes issued in domestic violence cases, where one spouse is accusing another spouse of domestic abuse.
When someone files for a protective order, it’s temporary, meaning that they only remain in effect until the next court hearing. At a protective order hearing, the court may make the protective order permanent if a judge deems it necessary.
If you have a protective order entered against you, it is essential that you abide by the terms of that order. If you violate a standing protective order, a warrant can be issued for your arrest.
It is also important to speak with a New Jersey protective order lawyer who can safeguard your legal and constitutional rights while your criminal case is pending. If this is under the conditions of a domestic violence case, having a skilled domestic violence lawyer represent you in court can help you obtain the best possible result in your pending domestic violence protective order case.
Common Types of Protective Orders
One common type of New Jersey protective order is a no-contact order. In this instance, an abusive spouse - or a former spouse, as the case may be - can be ordered to stay away from the other spouse (or ex-spouse) for a certain period of time.
A true no-contact order prohibits the accused spouse from contacting the victim spouse by any means, including via telephone, email, or text messaging. If child abuse is involved, the abusive spouse may be ordered to stay away from the couple’s children through a no-contact protective order.
In some cases, a no-contact protective order between current or former spouses is not feasible or appropriate. In that instance, the court may enter an order which prohibits the abusive spouse from visiting the victim spouse’s home, school, or workplace. This type of protective order will allow for contact between the individuals, so long as it occurs in a public space.
In cases where there is a history of violence between the accused spouse and the victim spouse - or if the accused spouse previously made a death threat that was directed toward the victim spouse - the protective order may preclude the accused from owning or possessing a firearm while the order is pending.
Duration of a Protective Order
A New Jersey protective order lawyer knows that an initial protective order will normally remain in effect until the next court hearing. At that time, the court will review the facts and circumstances of the case and make a determination about whether or not the order should continue.
At the final court hearing, the judge may continue the protective order for as long as necessary. If the victim is alleging serious instances of abuse, the protective order may remain in effect permanently, also known as a final restraining order.
Contact a New Jersey Protective Order Attorney
Protective order violations in New Jersey have serious penalties associated with them. If the accused spouse violates a standing temporary or final protective order, the defendant will be held in contempt of court. Under New Jersey law, a finding of contempt is punishable by fines, jail time, or a combination of both. Second and subsequent protective order violations can result in a minimum jail time of 30 days.
Anyone can apply for a protective order against another person, and victim allegations are not always truthful. Therefore, if a protective order has been lodged against you, it is best to consult with an experienced restraining order lawyer. A New Jersey protective order attorney can help you formulate a good legal defense to your charge and represent you at every stage of the restraining order proceedings.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Protective Orders in New Jersey
Being served with a restraining order can often evoke feelings of confusion and frustration. This is especially true in domestic violence cases when families, spouses, ex-spouses, and children are involved. If you’ve been served with a protective order, contact a New Jersey protective order lawyer as soon as possible so you can understand the terms and conditions of the order. Below are some questions that clients commonly ask after being served with a restraining order. These answers will help you understand what a New Jersey protective order is and why it’s necessary to speak with a lawyer if one has been entered against you.
Is there a difference between a restraining order and a protective order in New Jersey?
No, protective orders and restraining orders refer to the same thing. While reviewing New Jersey law and the contents on this page, you’ll see that the words protective order and restraining order are used interchangeably.
What kinds of protective orders are there in New Jersey?
If you’ve been served with a protective order, it will fall under one of these three categories: Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), Final Restraining Order (FRO), and a type of protective order that’s specifically designed for sexual assault.
Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
If someone files for a restraining order, typically a Temporary Restraining Order will be issued immediately. A judge can grant a Temporary Restraining Order if it is necessary to protect a victim’s life, health, or well-being. A Temporary Restraining Order will last until the hearing for a final restraining order, normally scheduled within ten days.
Final Restraining Order (FRO)
After a Temporary Restraining Order is filed, the court then schedules a hearing for a Final Restraining Order within ten days. At this hearing, both parties have a chance to tell their side of the story, present evidence, and provide witness testimonies. A judge will grant a Final Restraining Order if they see that the defendant remains a threat to the other party. A Final Restraining Order can be indefinite unless one party petitions the court to end or modify the restraining order. If the court issues a Final Restraining Order, the defendant will be required to pay a $500 fine and will no longer be able to legally own a firearm. The defendant will be fingerprinted and photographed and remain in the law enforcement database.
Sexual Assault Restraining Order (SASPA)
The third type of protective order is stated under the New Jersey Sexual Assault Survivor Protection Act. It provides greater protection to victims of sexual offenses. This law allows victims of sexual offenses to obtain a protective order to protect them from sexual violence from their alleged assaulter. The judge may find that the victim was subject to non-consensual sexual contact, sexual penetration, lewdness, or an attempt to conduct such acts. After a sexual assault restraining order is filed, a hearing for a final restraining order will typically take place within ten days.
To learn more about the differences between the different types of protective orders and how they’re established by the New Jersey court, contact our law office to learn more.
Extreme Risk Protective Order (ERPO)
To read the full Extreme Risk Protective Order Act click here.
Are restraining orders on your public record in New Jersey?
This is a common question that many people ask when being served a protective order. Keep in mind that restraining orders are civil violations, not criminal charges. Therefore, if someone is conducting a general background check for things like job applications or loan applications, a restraining order will not be listed.
General background checks will typically show your address, education, credit report, driving record, or any military service. Criminal background checks will show if an individual has been arrested, had warrants out for their arrest, been convicted of a crime, if they’ve been incarcerated, or if they’re a sex offender.
However, it’s important to remember that a restraining order will show up on the Domestic Violence Central Registry. In addition, if you violate the terms of your restraining order, that is considered a criminal offense. A violation of a protective order will show up on a criminal background check.
If you’re concerned about your professional or personal life being affected by a recent protective order issued against you, it’s important to speak with a New Jersey attorney as soon as possible. Contact our law office to discuss your circumstances with a protective order lawyer.
How does a temporary restraining order work in New Jersey?
After someone files for a protective order, a temporary restraining order will remain in place until the hearing for the final restraining order. If the plaintiff doesn't show up for the hearing, the temporary restraining order expires.
Before a judge issues a final restraining order, the plaintiff applies for a temporary restraining order. The court will not notify the defendant of the restraining order hearing and only hear evidence from the plaintiff. If the judge believes that the restraining order is necessary to protect the life, health, or well-being of the plaintiff, they will issue the temporary restraining order.
Typically, the police serve a temporary restraining order to the defendant along with a hearing date for the final restraining order. This will take place usually within 10 days. At the final restraining order hearing, both parties will present evidence, and witnesses will testify before a judge. If a judge issues a final restraining order, it will remain permanent. The court will not lift the order unless one of the parties asks the court to lift or modify it.
To gain a better understanding of both temporary and final protective orders and the protective order process, call our law office today.
What happens if you violate a restraining order?
It’s vital to understand that there are significant legal consequences if a defendant violates a restraining order. If a defendant violates a restraining order, it is considered a criminal offense and a criminal contempt of a court order. If you violate a restraining order, you can be arrested immediately. This is why it’s so important to understand the terms and conditions of your restraining order and read through it carefully with a lawyer. Someone can violate a restraining order simply by sending a text or an email to the plaintiff. If a restraining order is violated a second time, it will result in a 30-day mandatory jail sentence.
If you or someone you know has been served with a protective order, it’s essential to review it with a lawyer who specializes in New Jersey restraining order laws. Violations of these orders can result in criminal charges that can negatively affect you and your future career.
What does a protective order do?
In the simplest of terms, a protective order prevents a defendant from seeing or contacting the alleged victim.
A judge may also include the following details in a protective order:
- Temporary custody of children to the plaintiff;
- An adjustment of financial support or payment or mortgages, rent, or other financial obligations
- Prohibiting the defendant from contacting the plaintiff, their family, or place of work
- Prohibiting the defendant from owning or possessing firearms
It’s critical to understand the full extent of the terms and conditions of a restraining order. To learn more about what protective orders do, contact our law office to speak with a New Jersey protective order attorney.
Who can file for a protective order?
The New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act states that any victim of domestic violence can obtain a protective order. A “victim of domestic violence” means a person protected by the law and shall include any person who has been subjected to domestic violence by a spouse, former spouse, or any other person who is a present or former household member and where the victim is 18 years of age or older. This can be a person of any age, who has been subjected to domestic violence by a person with whom the plaintiff has a child in common, or if the plaintiff is pregnant by a man who she says will be the father of the child when the pregnancy is carried to term. This also includes any person who has been subjected to domestic violence by a person with whom the victim has had a dating relationship.
What can you expect at a protection order hearing?
At a final restraining order hearing, there is no jury. A judge will review the evidence, listen to witness testimonies, and make the final decision. It is up to the plaintiff to prove to a judge that a restraining order is necessary.
Both parties will have an opportunity to share their story, present witnesses, and provide evidence. They must also prove that both parties have been involved in a domestic relationship. New Jersey defines a “domestic relationship" as a current or former marriage, a dating relationship, members of the same household, or the parties have one or more children together.
They must also prove that the defendant did indeed commit an act of domestic violence.
New Jersey law defines an act of domestic violence as:
- Terroristic threats
- Criminal restraint
- Sexual assault
- False imprisonment
- Criminal mischief
- Criminal sexual contact
- Criminal trespass
- Criminal coercion
- Cyber harassment
- Contempt of a domestic violence order that is a crime or "disorderly persons offense," or any other crime that involves the risk of death or serious bodily injury
If a judge can see that the defendant poses a threat to the plaintiff, a final restraining order will be issued. If you’re served a final restraining order, but you feel as though your case wasn’t presented properly or the protective order is inappropriate for your circumstances, speak with a lawyer immediately. You only want to work with a New Jersey attorney that specializes in protective orders and domestic violence cases. Call our law office today to schedule an appointment to discuss your case.
Why do you need a New Jersey protective order lawyer?
Protective orders are sometimes filed at times when emotions are high and individuals feel overwhelmed. In these cases, after the dust settles, protective orders aren’t only inappropriate, but they can create a lot of challenges for couples and families. Without the guidance of a protective order lawyer, you may be required to abide by the terms and conditions of a restraining order that is unwarranted or unnecessary. In addition, violations of restraining orders can result in severe legal consequences such as expensive fines, jail time, bans from purchasing or owning firearms, or not passing a criminal background check. It’s important to have a New Jersey protective order lawyer by your side to walk you through each proceeding, explain the terms of your protective order, speak on your behalf at a hearing, or help you to avoid a protective order violation.
To speak with the best New Jersey protective order lawyer, contact the Law Office of John Fabriele today. John Fabriele can guide you through each stage of the process and assure you that your rights are protected. Call our law office today to schedule a free case evaluation.
New Jersey Protective Order Lawyer John B. Fabriele
The Law Office of New Jersey Criminal Attorney John B. Fabriele is available to take your case and fight your charges. Statistics show that the sooner you get an experienced attorney working on your protective order case, the easier it is to achieve the best possible results. We relentlessly and aggressively work for our clients to create a strong defense for your case to create the most desirable outcomes.
We represent people throughout Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Somerset, and Union Counties. If you would like a free consultation at our office feel free to contact us at (732) 246-0888.
New Jersey Protective Order Lawyer Office
New Jersey Protective Order Lawyer
East Brunswick , NJ
Phone: (732) 246-0888