Category Archives: Domestic Violence

St. Charles domestic violence defense attorney

Orders of protection are legally enforceable court orders that require a person to refrain from contacting certain individuals or being near designated locations. These orders are intended to protect victims of abuse, domestic violence, or stalking. However, protective orders are also vulnerable to being misused. Being the subject of an order of protection, sometimes called a restraining order, can be a confusing and embarrassing situation to handle. If you have recently learned that someone has filed an order of protection against you in Illinois, you may be completely unsure of how to respond. However, it is crucial that you take certain actions to protect yourself and avoid making the situation worse–even if the protective order is unjustified.   

Follow the Directives in the Order

Orders of protection can contain many different types of provisions. The protection order may require you to stay a certain distance away from the petitioner (the person who requested the protection order), as well as his or her home and workplace. You may be prohibited from calling, texting, or otherwise communicating with the petitioner. The order may even contain a requirement that you move out of your home.

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St. Charles order of protection defense attorneyProtective orders, also called orders of protection or restraining orders, are designed to help protect victims of abuse, stalking, or harassment from being harmed by another person. While these types of orders can be an extremely valuable legal tool for victims of domestic violence, orders of protection can also be misused. If someone has filed an order of protection, and you are named as the respondent, you may not know what to do. Read on to learn about Illinois protection orders and what your options are if you have been issued an order based on false allegations of domestic abuse.

The Basics of Illinois Orders of Protection

There are three main types of protection orders in Illinois: emergency orders of protection (EOP), interims order of protection, and plenary orders of protection. An EOP can be obtained without the alleged abuser being aware of it. EOPs last up to 21 days. A plenary order can be obtained after a hearing with a judge, and it can last up to two years. An interim protection order can be ordered for the time period in between an EOP and the hearing for a plenary order. An order of protection may prohibit you from contacting the petitioner and can require you to stay a certain distance away from the petitioner’s home or workplace. You could also be required to surrender any firearms you own.

How Should I Respond to False Allegations of Domestic Violence or Abuse?

Being falsely accused of stalking, harassment, or physical violence is a terrible ordeal to go through. However, if someone has filed an order of protection against you, and you did nothing wrong, you should still follow the directions in the protection order. This includes not calling or otherwise contacting the petitioner or going near him or her. Failure to comply with a court-ordered protection order can have serious consequences, including both civil liability and criminal penalties. You could even face large fees or jail time for not following the directions contained in an order of protection.

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St. Charles domestic abuse defense lawyer

When people hear the term “domestic abuse” their thoughts immediately turn to physical injuries that are purposefully inflicted on someone by a partner or another member of the household. However, domestic violence can take a psychological form, and verbal or emotional abuse can turn to physical harm. Illinois law defines domestic violence as one member of a household choking, hitting, pinching, or causing injury to another member of the home purposefully. The action can happen out of rage or just to control the other person. It is important to understand what the law considers abuse and its consequences in the event you or someone you know is charged with domestic violence. 

Mental/Emotional Abuse

Psychological abuse may be seen as the early stages of behavior that can lead to physical violence. While these actions will not leave behind physical scars, the emotional toll they take can leave lasting wounds on a person’s mental health. Some of the following actions may be considered emotional abuse:

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Naperville defense attorney

The classification of domestic violence covers a wide range of crimes. Illinois law considers assault or battery an act of domestic violence if it is perpetrated against a:

  • Family member;
  • Spouse or former spouse;
  • Current or former roommate;
  • Co-parent, regardless of whether the parents were ever married;
  • Former boyfriend or girlfriend; or
  • Household member with disabilities or their assistant.
  • Abuse may be physical, such as hitting, choking, pushing, or entrapping, to name a few. It may also take the form of harassment and/or stalking, threatening, forcing another person to do something he or she does not want to do, or denying someone proper medical care. Charges may also be increased if any of this is done in front of a child. 

What Someone Accused of Domestic Violence Can Do

If you are accused of a violent crime, you are innocent until proven guilty. These charges are of the utmost seriousness, so it is critical you seek legal counsel as soon as possible. Your attorney can investigate the facts of your case to seek dropped or reduced charges. This includes any witnesses that can support your claim of innocence or that you acted in self-defense. During this time, do not contact your accuser, and follow the advice of your legal counsel. 

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Naperville Stalking Lawyer

Regardless of your intent, you could commit a stalking offense under Illinois law. Sometimes stalking is a part of domestic violence charges, while other times it is a standalone charge. Stalking charges can affect every part of your life, from your career and living arrangements to your relationships with both family and friends. 

In this day and age, stalking can occur in many forms, which is why Illinois’ stalking law has been updated to reflect that.

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