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Oregon Domestic Violence Restraining Orders
What is a domestic violence restraining order?
A domestic violence restraining order is a court order under Oregon's "Family Abuse Prevention Act" that protects an abused person from an abusing person. It is a necessary and needed tool to protect true victims of abuse. It is also frequently misused by persons wishing to gain an advantage in an upcoming custody dispute, as the court can award temporary custody, and a restraining order hurts the restrained parent's ability to get sole custody.
What can I do if I am being abused?
You may be able to get a restraining order, which is an order from the court that tells your attacker to stop the abuse and to leave you alone. Restraining orders can also include temporary custody and parenting time orders. If your abuser then violates that order, that person can be arrested
What will I have to prove to get a restraining order?
To qualify, you must be abused as defined in a section of the restraining order statue, ORS 107.705. The abuser must have:
The abuse must have happened in the last six months. The court must find you are in imminent danger of further abuse from the abuser.
Who can get a restraining order? Who can I get one against?
You can get a restraining order against someone you are or were married to; adult relatives; a lover you live with or used to live with (of the same or opposite sex); a person who was your lover (of the same or opposite sex) during the last 24 months; and the other parent of your minor child. If you are under 18, you can get a restraining order against a person who is over 18 if the person is someone you are or were married to, or if you have ever had a sexual relationship with the person.
What do I do if the Respondent violates my restraining order?
If it is an emergency you should call 911 on your telephone. If it is not an emergency contact your local law enforcement office for assistance. You should always carry a copy of the restraining order with you so that law enforcement will be able to see the order in the event of a violation.
How can I get a restraining order?
Restraining order forms and instructions are available at all courthouses. Domestic violence shelters and hotlines, and legal service offices also have information about getting restraining orders. There is no cost for filing a restraining order and normally you will see a judge the same day you fill out the paperwork. If you live far from the courthouse, there is a procedure available to have a restraining order issued for you via the telephone.
What happens if my partner gets a restraining order against me?
Some people file for divorce and obtain a restraining order at the same time as part of "divorce planning" to gain an advantage in a divorce or custody case. The consequences for the alleged abuser are enormous, including losing the right to hunt and possess firearms, restriction on your rights to seek custody, and the constant risk of arrest for a reported violation. An attorney may be able to assist you in having the restraining order dismissed in court, or through negotiation.
Contact a lawyer immediately. You have many rights, but must act quickly to preserve them.
In Oregon, alimony may be ordered at the court's discretion. The parties may agree that one provides financial help to the other, either temporarily or permanently. One spouse may be required to pay alimony on a temporary basis while the recipient is enrolled in a job-training program.
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"A Plain English Guide to Protecting Your Children"
Author: Mary L. Boland, Attorney at Law
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