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Putting a Stop to Domestic Violence – Obtaining an Order of Protection

If you think your safety is at risk because of harassment and domestic violence, you can ask the court to issue an Order of Protection against the abuser. It is a legal restraining order that prohibits a person from contacting or committing acts of violence and abuse to the protected people. Moreover, it provides protective relief by adding other people to the order, removing firearms and other weapons from the premises, and granting exclusive use of the home.

If you are a victim of domestic violence, you can seek protection against any of the following people:

  • Your spouse or former spouse
  • Anyone you are currently living with or dating, or dated in the past
  • Anyone you had a child with
  • Anyone you are related to by marriage, blood, children, parents, and grandparents
  • Anyone in your household or stepfamily

By issuing an Order of Protection, a judge may direct the abuser not to harass, threaten, or injure you, your family, or any other person you have listed to be protected in the order. It may direct the offending person to:

  • Move out of your home
  • Stay away from the property you are living in, your workplace, and children’s school
  • Stay away from you, your children and other listed individuals
  • Pay child support
  • Stop abusive acts
  • Follow custody orders
  • Not have a gun or any other weapon
  • Not contact you via written notes, email, mail, telephone calls, text messages, social media, or third parties.

Based on the severity of the situation, the court may also make changes to parental responsibilities for custody and visitation through the Order of Protection.

Types of Orders of Protection

A judge may issue any one of the following types of orders of protection:

Plenary Order of Protection

This Order of Protection can only be given to an abuser who has been served by the sheriff. The Plenary Order can last for 2 years.

Interim Order of Protection

This order lasts for 30 days, and is given to abuser who has been served an Order of Protection, or numerous attempts have been made to serve the order to them.

Emergency Order of Protection

This protection order is issued on the same day the petition is filed for it. It lasts for 14 to 21 days. In some cases, the Emergency Order of Protection is given to someone without the abuser knowing about it beforehand.

How You Can File for an Order of Protection

There are several ways for asking for an Order of Protection, which are:

  • Filing a petition yourself by going to your local circuit clerk’s office in civil court.
  • Seeking help from a domestic violence program, which you can be found by calling the State of Illinois Domestic Violence Helpline.
  • Hiring an attorney to help you with filing a request for an Order of Protection. They will make a strong case and strengthen your legal standing in the court.
  • If criminal charges have been filed against the abuser by the state’s attorney, you can request for a criminal Order of Protection.

If you are a victim of domestic violence and want the ordeal to end, you should file for an Order of Protection against the offending person. Our DuPage County attorneys have 25 years of experience, and can help you with your case. Contact Keller Legal Services today at 630-868-3093 for a free initial consultation.