Rozin | Golinder Law provides diligent representation to clients facing a variety of divorce and family law matters. Restraining orders are common in cases involving domestic violence, and help provide a level of protection to victims.
At our firm, we have guided numerous clients through the New Jersey legal system regarding restraining orders. If you need help filing a temporary or final restraining order, we can discuss your situation and provide informative legal services from start to finish.
Contact us today to schedule a free, confidential consultation.
Temporary Restraining Orders
Under the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice, Prevention of Domestic Violence Act of 1982, there are two main types of restraining orders allowed for domestic violence victims. Temporary restraining orders (TROs) are granted to victims of domestic violence to provide legal protection against abusers.
The order may be filed with the Domestic Violence Unit of the Family Division at the county courthouse, or with the local police department.
In order to be filed locally, the TRO must be filed at the police department close to:
- The victim’s place of residence or shelter
- The location where the act of violence occurred
- The place where the abuser lives
Once filed, the police will contact a municipal court judge, who will consider the request and issue a TRO over the phone or in person. If, on the other hand, the complaint is filed with the Family Division, the court staff will interview the victim to decide whether or not to grant the restraining order.
After the determination of the plaintiff’s eligibility, the court judge or domestic violence hearing officer will review the case and order the TRO. Our Middlesex County divorce attorneys can help you navigate the New Jersey legal system and uphold your rights throughout the process.
After the TRO is issued, the police will serve it on the defendant, who will also be notified of the date of the hearing. This is usually set for 10 days after the TRO is issued. The police will also confiscate all firearms in the defendant’s possession, and will require the defendant to avoid contacting or interacting with the plaintiff.
If the defendant shares the same residence as the plaintiff, the defendant will need to move out and live somewhere else until the hearing, without exception. The TRO will stay in place until a judge orders its removal, extends it, or replaces it with a final restraining order.
Final Restraining Orders
Final restraining orders (FROs) are permanent replacements of TROs. They are usually issued at the final hearing, which is 10 days after the TRO is issued. A violation of an FRO is a criminal offense under New Jersey law, and is punishable by a mandatory arrest for a first offense. A second violation of an FRO requires a minimum of 30 days in jail.
Final restraining orders provide a number of protections to victims of domestic violence, including:
- Protection from future abuse
- Temporary custody of children
- Temporary possession of personal property
- Therapy and counseling
- Financial support for rent and mortgage payments
FROs also prohibit the defendant from owning firearms and from contacting the plaintiff in any way, including by phone calls, emails, or in-person communication. Once the FRO is issued, the police will fingerprint and photograph the defendant.
Furthermore, the defendant will have to pay a fine of $50 to $500, depending on the situation. The FRO will stay in effect until a court dissolves it, or until the plaintiff asks for its removal. However, if the plaintiff asks to remove the FRO, the judge will conduct a thorough interview to determine whether or not the plaintiff will be safe without the FRO in effect.
Who May File Restraining Orders?
Under the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, people who are 18 years or older can file for a restraining order. Furthermore, emancipated minors, and those who have suffered acts of abuse, may file for restraining orders against aggressors. Emancipated minors are those under the age of 18 who have either been married, have entered the military, are pregnant, have children, or are declared emancipated by a court or administrative agency.
By law, you may file a restraining order against:
- A current or former spouse
- The person you had a child with
- A current or former member of your household
- A person you have had a dating relationship with
- The person you are expecting to have a child with, if you are pregnant
If the person who is committing the acts of violence is under the age of 18, the court will not consider the case a domestic violence situation. Instead, it will consider it a juvenile delinquency case. At Rozin | Golinder Law, we have represented many clients against abusers. We can stand by your side and represent you and your saftey as you file for a restraining order.
Seek the Assistance of Our Divorce Lawyers for Your Case
If you need to file a temporary or final restraining order against an abuser, our compassionate Middlesex County divorce attorneys are here to help. We can guide you through the legal process, help you file the necessary paperwork, and represent you in court hearings. We know this is an extremely stressful and emotional time. That is why our firm strives to guide you and provide personal service every step of the way.