(US family law and generally) Restraining orders are basically official legal notices that are meant to keep people apart. Most restraining orders are issued to individuals in order to keep them from having contact with other individuals, but in some cases, a restraining order can be issued to a group to keep all of its members from having contact with a specific individual or group.
Types of Restraining Orders
While all restraining orders are meant to separate people from contact with certain others, there are a variety of types of restraining orders. The most common type of restraining order is considered official and time restrained, meaning all parties have been notified of the terms of the order, and neither party can violate such terms within a given period of time. However, a temporary restraining order can be granted even if both parties are not aware of the order. An example of this may be when one party feels threatened and the other party cannot be located. These types of orders are usually granted on an emergency basis when a life is being threatened.
Penalties for Violating a Restraining Order
If you have been issued a restraining order, violating it may come with severe consequences. In most cases, violating a restraining order can result in jail time, fines and other penalties. If you happen to be on probation from another criminal conviction when found in violation of a restraining order, you may also face penalties from your original conviction in conjunction with penalties from violating your restraining order. Typically, the penalties for violating an official restraining order range from jail time to severe fines that can reach into the thousands of dollars.
Violating Your Own Restraining Order
At times, it is possible to violate your own restraining order, and thus, you yourself may be facing charges. Keep in mind that a restraining order is issued through a local, state or federal law enforcement office, and so all parties must abide by the terms. If you have sought out a restraining order against someone, and then you make contact, you run the risk of being found guilty of violating the order yourself. Our Charlotte criminal defense attorney warns that if you have brought forward a restraining order complaint, you cannot make contact with the person to whom the order has been issued against unless you want to face criminal charges yourself.
If you are facing charges for violating a restraining order, or if you have inadvertently violated a restraining order that you sought out yourself, you may need to partner with criminal defense attorney. A criminal defense attorney can examine the specifics of your particular case and restraining order, and he or she can assist you in not only building the best defense, but also in figuring out the best course of action to keep you protected in the future.
Remember, your health and your happiness is too important to risk. Don’t allow someone else to have control over your safety and security. If you feel that you or your loved ones are in danger, please seek out the protection of law enforcement and a restraining order. If you have already done so and you feel that your rights are not being respected, seek out the services of an attorney at once by searching the Internet or by looking through your local phone book.
Shelby Warden is a legal researcher and regular contributing author for the Law Firm of Powers McCartan in North Carolina. If you have been charged with violating a restraining order in North Carolina, it is important you take that this charge seriously. By contacting an aggressive Charlotte criminal defense attorney from Powers McCartan you can be confident they will fight to protect your rights.