There are two sides to a restraining order; either you’ve been served or you want to file a restraining order against someone. Here are a few recommendations from an experienced attorney.   

    1. You want to file a restraining order. What do I do next?
      Restraining orders are common in divorce and child custody cases. “The first step is to obtain a temporary restraining order if you or your child is a victim of domestic violence, harassment, stalking, physical or sexual abuse,” says attorney Joseph H. Nivin. “We will submit a family offense petition to the court in order to receive a temporary order of protection until the case is resolved.”

    2. You’ve been served with a restraining order. Now what?

      “A restraining order is a serious matter and can mean jail time if you are found to have violated it,” says Attorney Joseph H. Nivin. To avoid damage to your reputation and to your relationship with your children, it’s important to move quickly. A lawyer can fight false allegations made against you, build your case and defend you in court.

      In either situation, it’s best not to have any contact with the person you are filing against or the individual who has wrongly accused you, unless it is absolutely necessary to arrange for parenting time, to discuss the children’s well-being, and most importantly, only if the terms of the order of protection permit you to have contact with the other party. If the other party invites you to violate the order of protection, i.e. come over to his or her home if the order of protection prohibits you from doing so, don’t do it.  The cops will arrest you even if the other party gave you permission to engage in behavior that violates the court order.


      See list of types of restraining orders and more info.