The Process Of Obtaining A Restraining Order In California

14 Jun The Process Of Obtaining A Restraining Order In California

Circumstances are bound to arise in which you and your family might feel threatened by someone and might need a way to protect yourself from that individual. If you are in such a situation, it is worth noting that there are actions, provided by California law, that you can take to protect yourself and your family from harassment or physical harm from the said individual. Obtaining a restraining order is one of the best measures to take in order to safeguard yourself and your family.

Definition Of A Restraining Order

If you aren’t aware of what exactly is a restraining order, it is an official order issued by the court to protect a person, and sometimes includes the members of the person’s household, from physical harm or injury that may be inflicted by another person. The restraining order protects the person and members of the family/household from threats, harassment, and stalking. However, it is worth noting that restraining orders differ from state to state and include a wide and varying range of protections.

Basically, a restraining order requires the restrained person to cease certain activities. A “restrained person” is the person who’s served with a restraining order while the person who’s seeking the restraining order against another individual is referred to as the “protected person.”

What Do Restraining Orders Include?

Restraining orders can include orders to stop specific acts against protected persons such as attacks, sexual assault, threats, harassment, destruction of personal property, making any kind of contacts, and disturbing the peace of the protected people.

Restraining orders may also include stay-away orders which require the restrained person to keep a certain distance such as 100 yards from the protected person and also residence exclusion orders which require the restrained person to move out of the residence where the protected person or persons live.

How To Obtain A Restraining Order In California

In order to obtain a restraining order in California, there is a procedure you are expected to follow and it is highlighted below.

First of all, it is important to keep in mind that time is usually of the essence when filing for a restraining order. Not only is this due to the obvious fact that your safety and that of your family is at risk but also due to the fact that the courts might not be able to issue a restraining order if a long period of time, which is usually at least 30 days, has passed since the last act of harm. It is, therefore, important to act fast when the need for obtaining a restraining order arises.

It is also essential to ensure that you gather all the necessary evidence that might be helpful in court, even the evidence that you feel is minor may be very helpful in investigations so be sure to gather it all.

Forms To Fill To Obtain A Restraining Order

When filing for a restraining order you might opt to file on your own or you might choose to hire an attorney. It goes without saying that hiring an attorney is always the best option when dealing with legal matters. They have the necessary legal knowledge and expertise to ensure that the results are in your favor.

So, the following are the forms that you or your attorney will need to fill out and forward them to the court.

– A form declaring who is to be protected and this includes family/household members

– A form to show the type of restraining order that you are seeking – There are usually 4 types of restraining orders, namely; Domestic Violence Restraining Order, Elder or Dependent Adult Abuse Restraining Order, Civil Harassment Restraining Order, Workplace Violence Restraining Order

– A form declaring who you are filing the order against

– A form to indicate whether there has been a history of restraining orders or court cases between the two parties


– A form documenting harm and abuse

– A form for specifics such as financial provisions and child support

– A form requesting a court hearing

– A form requesting for a temporary restraining order

– You might also be required to file additional forms involving issues such as finance, child custody, and other local court forms.

Filing With The Court

After filling out the above forms, submit them to the local court clerk who then forwards them to the judge. The judge will then make a ruling on your filing and you should know how the judge has ruled within one day. The information you’ll acquire is whether your request for a temporary restraining order has been approved, your court date, and the provisions that have been granted.

After the ruling and a court date has been granted, the restrained party must be served with the court papers. Your case can not be heard if the papers have not been served and you will have to provide proof of service at the hearing.

On the court day, ensure that you have with you copies of all the documentation and copies of the evidence to support your case. After your case is heard, the judge will pass a ruling. You might be granted all the requested permissions or some of it.

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