Ways to Keep Yourself Safe
Domestic violence is a disgusting act that should never be tolerated, yet it continues to perpetuate our society and put so many people at risk of physical, emotional, or mental harm. Fortunately, Missouri law contains provisions that enable victims of this crime to protect themselves.
Read on to learn about the types of protective orders available to citizens of Missouri.
Full Protective Order
The most basic type of protective order is a full order. A full order of protection will be granted after a court hearing is held that allows the respondent (person the order is filed against) to present their case. If the respondent does not show up for the hearing, then the full protective order will be granted by default.
A full protective order can provide the petitioner (person who files for protection) with various levels of protection, including the following:
Prevents the respondent from communicating with the petitioner
Prevents the respondent from engaging in domestic violence against the petitioner
Prevents the respondent from residing in the same place as the petitioner
Awards child support or child custody as appropriate
Full protective orders allow victims of domestic violence relief from the abuse they’ve suffered, but note that protective orders have a maximum length of time of one year after which the petitioner would have to file for a continuance, if necessary.
Ex Parte Order
When filing for a full order of protection, you may still find that you are in danger and face harm. If you want to add more protection to yourself, you can consider following for a temporary order in addition to your full protective order. This temporary order is known as an ex parte order of protection.
In order to receive an ex parte order, the judge hearing your petition for a protective order must find that you are in immediate and present danger of domestic violence until your protective order hearing. This means that ex parte orders are not guaranteed to be granted in a case. An ex parte order lasts from the time when the order is issued until the hearing for the full protective order can be held (with a maximum of 15 days for the order unless a continuance is requested).
Should an ex parte order of protection be granted, local law enforcement will be provided the order to enter into their database, and both the petitioner and the respondent will be served official copies. Ex parte orders of protection can serve similar purposes to those of a full protective order.
Speak with an Attorney
If you’re suffering from domestic violence, know that you do not have to stay in that terrible situation. Know that you have resources for protection. Contact an attorney to help you file for an order of protection. The attorneys at Rutter and Sleeth Law Offices can help provide relief by seeking a protective order.
Get in touch with our Missouri attorneys at (573) 279-1349 or visit our website to learn more. If you or someone you know is suffering from domestic abuse, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-7233).