Violence occurs all too often in relationships. It could involve a custody dispute that gets physical, a scorned former lover who has a hard time accepting the relationship is over or someone trying to get out of an abusive relationship. In these situations, an individual may want to seek a restraining order to gain some level of protection from harm to themselves and/or their loved ones.

Protective Orders

In Arizona, a restraining order is known as a protective order. It is an order issued by the civil court to restrain a person from committing a violent or threatening act and from harassing contact or other communication. Under Arizona Revised Statute 13-3602, violating a protective order can result in jail time for the offender, even if he or she never even touched the protected individual.

A protective order can be temporary or permanent. Someone can get a temporary protective order without the alleged perpetrator having a chance to respond to the allegations. The subject of the order may request a hearing to challenge the protective order or petition the judge to drop the order. A permanent protective order can be effective for up to 12 months, subject to further extensions.

The specifics of the order will depend on the specific facts and circumstances of the case. A protective order can limit contact or communication with another person, including limits on how far away the alleged harasser must stay. It may also prevent the subject from approaching certain locations, whether or not the alleged victim is present.

It is also becoming more common for protective orders to protect individuals against contact through the internet or social media. This could include tagging someone on Facebook, following an Instagram account, or sending Snapchat messages.

Seeking A Protective Order

To seek a protective order, you must submit a petition for a protective order to the court. This petition should include specifics about what the other person has done or has threatened to do to put you or your family in fear of physical harm, threat or harassment.

The protective order should also include information about specific locations where you want the protective order to apply, including your home, workplace, church, school or other locations you regularly frequent.

If the protective order becomes subject to a hearing, the judge will hear both parties present evidence, testimony and arguments and then determine whether the order should be upheld.

How To Reach Us

An Arizona family law attorney with experience handling protective and restraining orders can advise you of your rights so you can make the decision that is best for you. An attorney can handle all of the paperwork and petitioning process and represent you during a hearing. Call our lawyers in Tucson, Arizona, at 520-518-3781 or contact us online.