Domestic Violence Orders of Protection
Domestic violence orders of protection can prohibit an abuser from harassing, harming, intimidating, or contacting the victim. They are especially important in cases of domestic violence against disabled people, who are vulnerable to domestic abuse because they often lack the ability to seek protection.
Who May File for an Order of Protection?
Any person who is the victim of domestic violence, including a minor child or adult with disabilities, may file a petition for an order of protection. If the court finds that the person has suffered from abuse, the judge will then enter the order of protection. In determining whether to grant an order of protection, the court must consider several factors, including:
- The nature, frequency, severity, pattern, and consequences of abuse, neglect, or exploitation;
- The likelihood of future abuse, neglect, or exploitation; and
- The danger that any minor child will be abused, neglected, removed from the state, improperly concealed in the state, or separated from his or her caretakers.
Orders of protection can provide several remedies, such as:
- Prohibiting the abuser from having any contact with the victim;
- Prohibiting further acts of abuse, exploitation, or neglect;
- Requiring the abuser to move out of the victim’s house, even if the house belongs to the abuser;
- Requiring the abuser to stay away from the victim’s house, school, work, etc.;
- Requiring counseling for the abuser;
- Requiring the abuser to return the victim’s assets to him or her;
- Prohibiting the abuser from taking or damaging the victim’s personal property;
- Requiring the abuser to pay for the victim’s damages; and
- Granting the victim custody of a child, and determining the abuser’s visitation rights.
Types of Order
There are three types of orders of protection in Illinois: emergency, interim, and plenary. An emergency order of protection may be entered without notice to the abuser. They are allowed only under certain circumstances, such as when there is a risk of further abuse. Emergency orders are effective for 14–21 days.
Interim orders of protection last 30 days, and the abuser must be given notice of the petition and must be allowed a hearing. Plenary orders also require notice and a hearing, and last for up to two years.
Consequences of Violation
Violating an order of protection can lead to both civil liability and criminal penalties. Orders of protection are taken very seriously, and law enforcement officers may make arrests without warrants if they have probable cause to believe that a person is violating an order of protection.
Violating an order of protection can have serious consequences in Illinois. If you have been issued an order of protection, it is important that you understand the associated laws and regulations. Please contact the skilled Naperville criminal defense attorneys at Law Office of Glenn M. Sowa, LLC for an initial consultation on your case and to discover how we can help.