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Restraining Orders in CA: Temporary vs. Permanent

A restraining order is used by domestic violence victims to protect themselves from further harm. If such an order is violated, victims are allowed to contact law enforcement and have the abuser arrested.

There are various types of protective orders, but the two main types are temporary and permanent restraining orders. Depending on the circumstances of the case, victims may require one or the other, or even both.

The following are the differences between temporary and permanent restraining orders:

  • Temporary restraining orders – This type of restraining order is available for only a short period of time, lasting for only a few weeks until a court hearing for a permanent restraining order takes place. The level of evidence necessary to obtain such an order is extremely low. All that the petitioner must do is allege that abuse or harassment has occurred and the perpetrator will likely do it again if the restraining order is not imposed. The written order will disclose the court hearing date in order to determine whether or not to elevate the temporary restraining order to permanent or extend the validity of the temporary order.
  • Permanent restraining orders – A permanent restraining order can last for one to several years, and even up to the rest of the perpetrator’s life depending on the circumstances of the case. The petitioner is required to back up their allegations with clear, conclusive evidence of physical harm, harassment, or threats (i.e. text messages, e-mails, photographs, and other forms of concrete evidence that supports the petitioner’s claims). A permanent restraining order may include various provisions, such as prohibiting the abuse from contacting the petitioner, ordering the abuser to stay a specific number of feet or yards away from the petitioner, and forcing the abuser to move out of the home he/she shares with the petitioner.

What Is a Permanent Restraining Order Hearing?

In California, a permanent restraining order hearing is required in order for a temporary restraining order to be lengthened or made permanent. During a permanent restraining order hearing, the respondent (the subject of the temporary restraining order) will have a chance to argue against the restraining order.

If you are experiencing any form of domestic violence in San Diego, our experienced legal team at Cage & Miles, LLP is committed to ensuring your safety and protecting your well-being. We can guide you through the process of obtaining a restraining order and put a stop to the abuse you are suffering. Contact us and speak with our San Diego family law attorneys for more information today.

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