Steps To Take To File For Restraining Orders

Written By Gary J. Natale

Emergency Restraining Orders

Abuse and violence do not adhere to nicely packaged schedules. Many times when someone is in need of the immediate protection a restraining order provides, the courts are closed. This could be on a weekend, during a holiday, or after hours. Fortunately, the state of New Jersey has provided a way for citizens to still get the protection a restraining order provides in such a circumstance.

If you are in imminent danger or harm right now, call your local police department or 911 and request to speak with the on-call judge about a restraining order. There will be a judge who is assigned to handle emergency restraining order requests. If the judge agrees you are need immediate protection, you can receive a short-term, emergency restraining order.

Petitioning For Restraining Order

During open court hours, you will need to go through the normal process of petitioning for a final restraining order. Since a restraining order petition is not the same as a criminal charge, you will not start at your local criminal court. To petition for a restraining order, you will need to start with municipal court instead.

Present Your Petition In Municipal Court

File your complaint and petition for a restraining order in municipal court. The judge can make a decision without the alleged abuser in court. This is called “ex parte”. You can request an immediate restraining order and if the judge decides it cannot wait until the hearing, an ex parte temporary restraining order (TRO) could be given.

Present Your Case To Family Court Judge

The TRO will last 10 days. Meanwhile you will need to appear before a family court judge and present evidence of the abuse and discuss your reason for wanting a final restraining order.

Sometimes restraining orders can be used in the middle of divorce proceedings as a way to get leverage for custody. Sometimes restraining orders are written in such a way that it forces a spouse or partner out of the house. In addition, the order may prevent a parent from spending time with his or her child.

Each party in restraining order cases deserves legal representation by an attorney who understands all the facts behind the petition. Few attorneys have the depth of understanding and breadth of experience fighting for clients as Gary Natale. He will fight for every relevant fact in pursuit of the best possible outcome for his client.

Contact Us for a Free Consultation

For more information or to schedule an appointment with an experienced Essex County divorce attorney, please contact us.

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