Orders of Protection

Orders of Protection

We have to start by saying Family Court Orders of Protection probably represent one of the most difficult aspect in all of the practice of Family Law. Somehow it has come to be quite common just before you begin a divorce action one of the parties seek an Order of Protection in an attempt to remove your the other from the home you share. There can be also no question but that there are situations where Orders of Protection are both vitally necessary and maybe even long overdue. Thus, the order of protection can represent the most serious and necessary aspects of family law. At the same time, it is also one of the most subject to abuse for tactical reasons. The only way you can get an Order of Protection is by showing that a Family Offense has been committed. Family Offenses are defined by the Penal Law and are only:

  • Disorderly Conduct
  • Harassment
  • Aggravated Harassment
  • Menacing
  • Reckless Endangerment
  • Assault or attempted Assault
  • Stalking
  • Criminal Mischief

An Order of Protection may include the requirement that the person against whom the order is issued:

  • Stay away from the petitioner and any children involved (Stay-Away Order)
  • Pay reasonable counsel fees of the petitioner
  • Participate in a batterer’s education program
  • Pay petitioner’s medical bills for injuries sustained as a result of the abuse
  • Stay away from the home, school, or place of employment of the petitioner and any children involved
  • Refrain from committing additional family offenses or acts that endanger the welfare of other family members
  • Be permitted to remove personal property from a shared residence at a time designated by the court
  • Be permitted to visit with any children at court designated times and places
  • Refrain from intentionally injuring or killing, without justification, any companion animal the respondent knows to be owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the petitioner or a minor child residing in the household. (‘Refrain’ Order

Note: Orders of Protection can be issued by Family Court, Supreme Court and Criminal/District courts.