How to Proceed if Your Protective Order is Denied
As experienced legal counsel, we understand that a Protective Order is often a delicate and complex subject and recognize the importance of being prepared for every possible outcome. In the case that your request for a protective order is denied, the advisors at Rodier Family Law are here to provide several options and best practices for you and your loved ones to consider.
Listen to the Hearing Results Carefully and Seek Outside Assistance
Note: this article assumes you did not have an attorney at the protective order hearing that was denied
During the hearing, be sure to listen calmly and carefully. Do not interrupt the judge, the Respondent (the person you filed a protective order against) or the respondent’s lawyer. Wait until it is your turn to speak and, if something is unclear, do not be afraid to ask for clarification.
If you are not granted a Protective Order, you can still take action to stay safe. Consider contacting one of the domestic violence resource centers in your area to get help, support and advice on how to stay safe. They may be able to help you come up with a safety plan and help connect you with the additional resources you need.
Consider an Appeal or Peace Order
Your individual circumstances may mean that you have the option to explore additional legal options. If the judge does not grant a Protective Order, the Petitioner (you) may be able to appeal that decision to a higher court (typically from the District Court to the Circuit Court). Appeal forms are available online and at either or both the Clerk’s Office or the Pro Se Department of your local Courthouse. Generally an appeal must be filed no later than five (5) days after the Protective Order has been denied. Family court will typically hold a hearing on the appeal within two (2) weeks. If you did not have counsel at the Protective Order hearing you can retain an attorney to assist you with the appeal process.
You may also file for a Protective Order for a minor child. This prevents an abusive parent from coming within a certain radius of the child, but the order can also cover a very wide range of conduct and requirements. If you do not qualify for a Protective Order, you may be able to file for a Peace Order. Be sure to consult an experienced family law attorney to determine which of these option(s) would be right for your situation if you have questions.
Consider Experienced Legal Counsel with The Experts at Rodier Family Law
The family law attorneys at Rodier Family Law are committed to your best interests and will work to ensure that you and your loved ones are represented fairly. Effective legal counsel can often be your best recourse when it comes to sensitive issues like divorce and Protective Orders, and our attorneys are here to help. Contact us today for more information or to request an initial consultation.