Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Served With A Protective Order - What You Need To Know

You need to get an attorney immediately.  If you've been served with a Temporary Protective Order, your court date on the Final Protective Order is going to be exactly seven days from the date the Temporary Order was issued.  If you don't have an attorney with you, you may have to go forward without one, or the Temporary Order against you will have to be extended while you get a new court date and find an attorney.  This could mean extending the period of time you have to stay away from your own home if you share it with the petitioner (person requesting the order). 

Going forward without an attorney is extremely risky.  The consequences of having a Protective Order entered against you are serious.  If a judge finds that you committed an act of abuse or put the petitioner in fear of imminent serious bodily harm, the judge can order you out of your home, to have no contact with the petitioner, to stay away from their place of work, and to surrender your personal firearms to the sheriff, all for an entire year.  In some cases, the judge can even make decisions regarding contact with your children.

If there are assault charges connected to the events that led to the protective order, it's even more important that you get an attorney to protect your rights.  Anything you say in your defense during the hearing on the protective order can be used against you at trial on the assault charges.  An attorney can help you decide whether it's in your best interest to testify or to remain silent.  In some cases, an attorney can help you win your case without you having to say a word. 

 If you or someone you know has been issued a protective order and would like representation at your hearing, please do not hesitate to give us a call at 410-995-1515 for a free consultation.

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