Do I Need a Lawyer for My Restraining Order Case?

April 5, 2023

Yes. Having a restraining order against you comes with serious consequences, so you must work with an experienced lawyer to protect your interests. Restraining orders, also known as protective orders, are court orders that prohibit a person from contacting, coming near, or harming another person, along with other conditions. In California, there are four types of restraining orders that protect people from:

Restraining orders can remain in effect for up to five years, while temporary restraining orders (TROs) may last for a couple of months. Emergency protective orders (EPOs) last for five to seven days.

What Happens If I Violate a Restraining Order?

It is also immensely crucial to note that you can be charged with a misdemeanor or felony if you violate a restraining order. Punishments can include up to a year in jail and a fine not exceeding $1,000. But this offense can become a wobbler, which is an offense a prosecutor can charge as either a felony or misdemeanor if:

For a felony offense, the penalties include up to years in prison and a $10,000 maximum fine. Most restraining orders also prohibit restrained individuals from purchasing, possessing, or owning a firearm.

What Happens If Someone Files a Restraining Order Against Me?

If someone has filed a restraining order against you, the judge will schedule a hearing to determine how to proceed. During the hearing, the judge will decide whether to make the restraining order permanent or drop it. Make sure to respond to the order and attend the hearing. The judge might consider you guilty and make the order permanent if you fail to respond and attend the hearing.

Fighting a restraining order can be very stressful and challenging. While you’re facing the loss of your home, custody of your kids, or your job, and other potential negative consequences, you will need to build a solid defense to fight the allegations against you and present evidence to prove that you’re not a threat to the person that filed the restraining order against you.

You must act quickly, especially if your spouse or partner filed the restraining order. If the judge grants it, you might not see your children or go home for a very long time, so responding immediately is important. That is why you will need the guidance of a lawyer to fight for your rights.

Reach Out to an Experienced Santa Barbara Criminal Defense Attorney Today

A restraining order can easily upend your life. You must review the order with a Santa Barbara criminal defense attorney and respond to the evidence and allegations against you right away. Your attorney will know the best legal strategy for your case. To learn more about your case and how our Santa Barbara criminal defense attorney can help, contact Bamieh & De Smeth and arrange your free case review by calling 805-643-5555 or reaching us online.