What Is An Order Of Protection In Tennessee?
An order of protection is a legal document signed by a judge and tells someone who is hurting or scaring you to cease or face legal consequences. The purpose is to offer protection for victims of domestic abuse, sexual assault, and stalking. An order of protection orders the abuser to cease all contact of any kind with the victim for a period of one year. This includes phone calls, text messages, emails, social media, or any form of third party contact. In most cases this order is filed to prevent any further domestic violence or harassment. To be eligible for an order of protection the victim must have either been in a romantic relationship, lived with or be related to the abuser. There are exceptions for sexual assault and stalking in which case no relationship is required.
When an order of protection is filed, the judge or magistrate will normally issue a temporary order of protection. The order of protection is then served upon the respondent and the case is set for hearing. If after a hearing on the issues, the Court finds that there is sufficient evidence to grant the order of protection then the Court will issue an order valid for 1 year. Violation of an order of protection is an A misdemeanor punishable by up to 11 months and 29 days in jail.
How Long Do Orders Of Protection Generally Last For?
Orders of protection generally last for one year. That time period can be extended based upon different factors. If the order of protection is broken during that one year period, a person can file a motion to ask that the order be extended, and the judge can extend that order of protection to up to five years.
Is There A Possibility To Plead My Case And Have An Order Of Protection Dismissed?
Yes. You should fight and never concede to an order of protection. An order of protection has very far reaching consequences, beyond what people realize. Even though you may have no intention to ever be around the petitioner never concede. Each violation could subject you to 11 months and 29 days in jail. Additionally, a person under an order of protection may not purchase or possess a firearm while the order is in place.
What Should I Do If There Is An Order Of Protection Against Me And The Other Party Is Trying To Contact Me?
If someone has an order of protection against you and that person contacts you, give no response. Do not communicate with them in any way. Do your best to collect all evidence of their attempts to contact you. If they text message you, let them keep texting you. Give those text messages to your attorney. If they keep calling you, don’t answer and make a record of all missed calls. Under no circumstances should you ever respond to them.
What Happens If An Alleged Victim Recants Allegations Of Domestic Violence?
If a petitioner wishes to have an order of protection dismissed they may usually do so by contacting the court that issued it. However, if there are criminal domestic violence charges associated, those charges may only be dismissed by the district attorney for the state.
For more information on Orders Of Protection In Tennessee, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (615) 546-0048 today.
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