New York Restraining Order Defense Lawyers
A restraining order, also known as an order of protection, is a court order that prevents a person from engaging in certain behaviors. Orders of protection range in terms of duration, types of conduct prohibited, and scope. At the more severe end, an order of protection can even prevent a person from returning to their own home. Often issued in connection with charges of domestic violence, an order of protection can be as bad or worse than the associated criminal charges. An order of protection can prevent you from living your normal life, staying in your own residence, and visiting with your family. An order of protection can also leave a permanent stain on your legal record, affecting things like future employment prospects or professional licensing.
From their office in Goshen, the New York criminal defense lawyers at Dupée & Monroe, P.C. help people throughout the Hudson Valley and Orange County fight back against unjustified restraining orders and other infringements on their rights. If you have been the target of an order of protection, you have the right to push back and seek either a more limited order or no order at all.
Types of Orders of Protection
Whenever a defendant is arrested on charges of domestic violence (including harassment, stalking, assault, child endangerment, or other conduct perpetrated against a spouse or other household member), the court will likely issue a temporary protection order as a condition of release. Later on, the court will decide whether to continue the restrictions in the form of a permanent order of protection. Civil family courts also have the authority to issue orders of protection, although the reasoning and processes vary somewhat.
There are two general types of orders of protection in New York:
- Limited or “Do Not Harass.” Limited orders of protection set certain conditions on the subject of the order. The order will likely prohibit the subject from assaulting, menacing, stalking, or harassing the complainant, but it may not actually prevent the subject from being in physical proximity to the complainant. A spouse subjected to a limited order of protection, for example, will need to be on their best behavior but they will likely not need to move out of a shared home.
- Full or “Stay Away.” The subject of the order may have no contact whatsoever with the alleged victim. No calls, texts, emails, or in-person visits. If the subject and the alleged victim live together, the subject may be forced to move out of their residence. They may be restricted from contact with their spouse or partner as well as their children, or they may be restricted to supervised visitation.
How Long Do Orders of Protection Last?
A temporary order of protection may be implemented as part of a criminal case, set to last until the case is concluded or until the defendant successfully petitions for removal of the order. The duration of the order will depend upon the length of the case and other circumstances.
At the conclusion of the case, or as requested in a family court proceeding, the court will decide whether to let the order of protection lapse or instead issue a permanent order of protection. A final order of protection can last as long as five years, depending on the circumstances. Typically, unless there are aggravating circumstances (such as physical injury, a history of repeated violations, prior convictions, etc.), the final order will last one to two years. With cause, the court can extend the time period before expiration.
Consequences for Violating an Order of Protection
Violating a temporary or permanent restraining order may lead to a criminal contempt charge, whether the order was issued by a family court or as part of criminal proceedings. Contempt charges can lead to fines, jail time, and other consequences such as losing out on parental and custodial rights. Even the mere allegation of a restraining order violation can significantly impact a custody battle or other family court proceeding and can upend the life of the order’s subject.
Get Help With a Restraining Order in New York
The lawyers at Dupée & Monroe have decades of experience helping people avoid the most serious consequences that can result from criminal charges and criminal convictions. Even ostensibly civil measures like orders of protection can be punitive in nature. Our order of protection defense attorneys will fight for your rights, working to ensure that the best interests of both you and your family are served by the ultimate outcome. If you have been made the target of a restraining order, or if you have been arrested for a criminal offense in Goshen, Orange County or anywhere in the Hudson Valley region, contact Dupée & Monroe, P.C. for immediate assistance from our dedicated and passionate New York criminal defense attorneys.