Domestic violence is an unfortunately all too common and very real problem
for thousands of people around the country. When you or a loved one has
been the victim of domestic violence, the first thing you should do is
seek safety as soon as possible. This primarily means physical safety,
including getting out of your home and seeking shelter with a friend,
family member, or loved one. However, this also includes
legal safety, which can come from a restraining order.
How to Obtain a Restraining Order
When you are a victim of domestic violence, you must file a domestic violence
restraining order. The process begins with five forms that are available
from your local courthouse:
- A request for Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DV-100)
- A Notice of the Court Hearing (DV-109)
- A Temporary Restraining Order (DV-110)
- A Confidential CLETS Information (CLETS-001)
- A Description of Abuse (DV-101), though this is only if you need further
space to describe the abuse
It’s important to fill out these forms with as much detail as possible,
including describing all injuries you have sustained and any instances
of abuse against your children or other individuals you may have witnessed.
Once you have completed these forms, make two copies of your DV-100 form
and staple all three (the original plus the two copies) to your CLETS-001,
DV-109, and DV-110 together and bring them to the courthouse for filing.
There is no feel to file a domestic violence restraining order.
Once you have submitted this paperwork and it is processed (which usually
takes no more than a day) you may serve the abusive party the temporary
restraining order and the Notice of Court Hearing. There are a few ways
in which you can serve notice to them. Law enforcement can usually serve
notice for a nominal fee (usually the safest route), but anybody who is
not party to the case and over the age of 18 can serve notice on your
behalf, so long as they fill out the Proof or Personal Service form (DV-200).
Finally, you can hire a process server if you have the resources to do
so. Regardless of how you serve notice, make sure you bring the completed
Proof of Service form to your court hearing.
At your hearing, the judge will hear arguments on both sides of the abuse
and rule whether or not to dismiss the order or extend it, and possibly
adjust the terms depending on their discretion.
It’s also highly advisable to have an attorney help you with obtaining
your restraining order. My name is
Jeffrey S. Graff, and as a Westlake Village family law attorney, I am dedicated to helping
you find the outcome you are seeking to some of the most difficult legal
issues in your life. When you’re pursuing a restraining order, I
know how important it is to act quickly and decisively, and I make it
my personal mission to get you the legal protection you need from your
abuser so you can breathe easier and live with less stress as you begin
pursuing your next steps.
Call my firm, the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Graff, and ask for a case evaluation. Call
today at 805-633-4999 to get started.