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Court order of protection (restraining order)
If you are being abused, you can get a court order of protection to protect yourself and your children.
A court order of protection can:
- Order the abuser not to have any contact with you and your children
- Order the abuser to move out of your home and give you use of the car
- Order the abuser to pay child support or spousal support, or to continue your insurance coverage
You can get an application for a court order of protection at courthouses, women's shelters, lawyers' offices, and some police stations.
If an order is issued and the abuser does anything listed on the order, call the police right away. The abuser can be arrested for violating the order.
An order of protection is just one way of protecting yourself and your children. Contact a local domestic violence agency to talk about other options.
- Civil protection order
- Domestic violence protection or protective order
- Emergency, temporary, or ex parte order
- Harassment order
- Injunction for protection
- Order of no contact
- Orders not to abuse, harass, contact, etc. that are part of bail, probation, or parole conditions
- Protection from abuse order
- Restraining order
- Stalking protection or protective order
- Stay away order
Explore other publications and websites
Consumers' Guide to Legal Help (Copyright © American Bar Association) — Most legal issues are determined by the law in the state where you live or where the problem occurred. This map helps you find legal help by state. Information on legal issues is provided, such as where to find help, court information, and more.
Dating Violence: Can Teens Access Protection Orders? (Copyright © National Center for Victims of Crime) — This publication has information about teen access to protection orders. It lists information for each state about who can file, what the order is called, how long the orders last, and links to the statutes.
Restraining Orders (Copyright © WomensLaw.org) — Because each state has different laws on restraining orders, you can search by state for laws on this website.
Stalking Laws (Copyright © National Center for Victims of Crime) — Use this website to find information about criminal stalking laws by state, civil stalking laws by state, federal laws, and penalties.
State Law Report Cards (Copyright © Break the Cycle) — Use this interactive map to see how your state ranks in supporting survivors of dating violence. You can also find information on each state’s definition of abuse, relief available, and access to orders of protection for teens.
Connect with other organizations
American Bar Association
Office for Victims of Crime, U.S. Department of Justice
U.S. Department of Justice
Women's Health Task Force
Women's Resource Center
Content last updated May 18, 2011.
Resources last updated May 18, 2011.
A federal government website managed by the Office on Women's Health in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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