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Domestic Violence Series – Part 4

This is the fourth in this blog series covering domestic violence in Placer County. The first three can be found here:

  1. The Placer County Domestic Violence Court and common domestic violence charges
  2. Victim and witness participation issues
  3. What to do if you’re involved in a domestic dispute and common defenses to domestic violence charges.

A protective or restraining order is a judicial degree that makes it a crime for the restrained person to defy the terms of the order. The two basic types of protective orders are civil and criminal.

Civil Protective Orders

A civil restraining or protective order is obtained, often on an emergency basis, by a person to prevent another person from harassing, disturbing, or contacting them

The civil order can also direct the restrained person to stay away from a home, vehicle, or school and can control who may live in the home, and who may have child custody and visitation rights.

To obtain a civil protective order, an applicant must show that she or he is in immediate and present danger of domestic violence based a recent incident of abuse or threatened abuse by the person to be restrained.

The violation of a civil protective order is a misdemeanor.

Criminal Protective Orders

In a domestic violence case, a judge may issue a criminal protective order to protect the alleged victim from further abuse. Such an order can limit contact or communication between the two parties, or prevent the defendant from intimidating the alleged victim.

The violation of a criminal protective order is a misdemeanor.

Peaceful Contact Orders

One form of a criminal protective order is a “peaceful contact order,” which allows the defendant to make peaceful contact with the alleged victim.

Protective Orders and Firearms

All restraining orders (both civil and criminal) issued in domestic violence cases prohibit the defendant from possessing, purchasing, receiving, or attempting to purchase or receive firearms. A defendant must also turn over all firearms he owns or possesses to the police or sell them to a registered dealer within 24 hours of the issuance of the order.

If you are involved in a domestic violence dispute and would like to discuss your criminal or civil protective order, contact me at (530) 823-5400 for a confidential consultation.