PROTECTING VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
If an individual has been the victim of domestic violence, they may need the court’s intervention to protect them, and their family. One way to accomplish this is to file a domestic violence restraining order, also known as a temporary restraining order (TRO).
E&L, LLP provides compassionate representation for people seeking protection from domestic violence and child abuse. We can assist in filing a TRO, represent clients at hearings and, if necessary, litigate the order. Contact our firm today to find out how we may be able to assist in protecting your safety and well-being.
ISSUES OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASES
Domestic violence restraining order cases involve situations in which a person commits an act of abuse on a spouse, partner, boyfriend, girlfriend, certain family members, child, or even a pet. California Family Code § 6320 defines abuse as molesting, attacking, striking, stalking, threatening, sexual assaulting, battering, harassing, excessive communications including telephone or cell phone calls, destroying personal property, or disturbing the peace.
A party filing a request for a protective order could expect to receive a temporary restraining order (TRO); a permanent restraining order; a move-out order; alcohol assessment; exclusive use or possession of an apartment, home, car, truck, automobile, or other property; child custody and child visitation; supervised visitation; child support and spousal support; batterers’ intervention program; weapons, guns, knives, firearms restrictions; and attorney’s fees and costs
In many cases of domestic abuse, alcohol and drugs, anger issues and financial concerns play a role. If an individual fears imminent bodily harm to themselves or their children, they have the right to seek protection. Filing a TRO can have the abuser excluded from the house and mandate that they have no contact with you for a certain period of time, and distance. If children are involved, the individual seeking protection may protect the children as well from abuse and harm.
FALSIFIED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
There is no doubt that domestic abuse is a real concern. However, sometimes people involved in contentious divorce or child custody cases make false accusations of abuse to attempt to win a case. If an individual has been falsely accused, our firm can defend them against the charges.
Contact us to schedule an appointment for your free consultation, or contact us online, regarding your family law matter, and determine how we may be able to assist you.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
WHAT IS A TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER?
A domestic violence temporary restraining order, or DVTRO, is a court order that lasts 21 days at a maximum. These orders can require the restrained party to perform certain acts and/or prevent the restrained person from performing certain acts, such as move from the family or jointly occupied residence, turn in firearms to law enforcement, avoid contacting in any way the other party, abide by certain temporary child custody orders, and so forth.
HOW DO I OBTAIN A PERMANENT RESTRAINING ORDER?
If the court grants an emergency restraining order or a temporary restraining order, an evidentiary hearing will be scheduled in which the applicant and respondent will be ordered to appear in court to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to justify a permanent restraining order. The court may grant such an order for up to a maximum of 5 years.
DOES DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HAVE AN EFFECT ON CHILD CUSTODY ORDERS?
Yes. If there is evidence of abuse beyond preponderance of the evidence, then under California law, the court is required to consider domestic violence issues in making orders regarding child custody and visitation as well as child and spousal support. This means that if the court finds that there has been domestic violence by one parent, the court may find that it is not in the child’s best interest to award that parent legal or physical custody of the child.
WHAT DOES CLETS STAND FOR?
CLETS stands for California Law Enforcement Telecommunication System. CLETS is a police database that is designed to ease the enforceability of restraining orders and provide greater protection for persons who are granted restraining orders. If the court issues a domestic violence restraining order in your case, it will be entered into the CLETS system so that the restrained party will likely be arrested if he or she violates the order.
DOES DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECT SPOUSAL SUPPORT?
The court is required to consider domestic violence as a factor in calculating permanent spousal support. There is also a presumption against granting spousal support to the spouse who committed domestic violence. This means that the spouse who committed acts of domestic violence will likely not be granted spousal support.
I HAVE A MINOR CHILD, CAN THE COURT MAKE CHILD CUSTODY AND CHILD VISITATION ORDERS WITHIN THE TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER?
Yes. The applicant of a DVTRO may request temporary custody of a child involved in the case, so long as there is an allegation of harm to the child.
CAN THE SHERIFF SERVE A RESTRAINING ORDER?
Yes. Under California law, you must serve the restrained party with a copy of the restraining order by “personal service.” Any person over the age of 18 who is not a person protected by the order or a party to the action can serve the order. You can also arrange for the sheriff’s department to deliver the order to the restrained party, which is done free of charge.