In order to help prevent domestic violence, judges can issue a Domestic Violence Restraining Order (“DVRO”). If you have been served with a DVRO, formal copies of the restraining order must be delivered to you personally. As part of the copies you’ll receive a form to fill out to schedule a hearing and respond to the restraining order claims against you. As soon as you receive the restraining order, it’s important to obey the terms, otherwise you may have to pay a fine, go to jail, or both, if you are found to be in violation of the restraining order.
A Restraining Order becomes effective and valid as soon as you have been officially notified and it has been personally served to you. The copies of the order must be “easy-to-read” and Form DV-120 (i.e., “Answer to Temporary Restraining Order”) must be included. You must formally file an “Answer” in order to respond to the alleged victim’s allegations against you. At the Restraining Order hearing, the judge will take the “Answer” into consideration to decide whether to cancel the order, change it’s terms, or make the Restraining Order permanent. During the preparation for a Restraining Order hearing it’s invaluable to have an experienced criminal defense attorney prepare your “Answer.”
A court ordered Restraining Order against you can be very restrictive. After officially being notified, there are a variety of effects against you as the person being restrained:
Violations of a Restraining Order can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor under Penal Code 136.1 and 136.2, and could include jail or prison time if convicted. Under Penal Code 166 criminal charges for contempt of court can be brought if you were aware of the order, failed to obey it if you were able to, and willingly failed to obey it. The court treats criminal contempt of court charges very harshly. Violation of a domestic restraining order may also be prosecuted under PC 273.6. This code addresses the intentional violation of a restraining order that has been issued.
If you have been served with a restraining order, you need the expert advice and experience of a criminal defense attorney such as Sevens Legal, APC. Contact Sevens Legal, APC, today for a free consultation.