If you were accused of domestic abuse or violence, there is a good chance that your accuser sought a restraining order against you, which is also called an order of protection. While you have the right to challenge this protective order, judges can issue orders for up to two years without you even appearing in court. Some full orders can last up to 50 years in some situations.
It is important to challenge orders of protection with the help of a Woodbury domestic abuse lawyer. However, if you already have an active restraining order against you, it is highly important to comply with the terms and restrictions of the order. Failing to do so can result in an arrest and new criminal charges under Minnesota law. If you are accused of violating an order of protection, you need defense representation right away.
Each restraining order will have its own restrictions depending on the circumstances of the case. Some terms and conditions that are commonly violated include:
- Contacting the protected individual
- Coming within a certain distance of the protected individual, their home, or workplace
- Refrain from using drugs or alcohol
- Give up all firearms and weapons and do not possess any firearms for the duration of the order
Even if the person who sought the order tries to initiate communications or contact, it is important not to do so, as this can be seen as a violation.
Penalties for Violating an Order of Protection
The possible consequences of a violation will depend on the situation and the allegations against you. Some possible charges and penalties include:
Misdemeanor = You can face a misdemeanor charge if you have no prior domestic assault convictions on your record. A conviction can mean 90 days in jail and fines up to $1,000.
Gross misdemeanor = If you have a prior conviction for domestic assault within the past ten years, you can face gross misdemeanor charges, which can mean up to one year in jail and fines up to $3,000.
Felony = Violating a restraining order can be a felony charge if you have two or more convictions for domestic assault within the past ten years. This could mean up to five years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
Many people who have restraining orders also face criminal cases for domestic assault. It is important to have the right attorney fighting against a domestic assault conviction, as it can have many effects on your life – including increased penalties for alleged restraining order violations. If you are accused of a violation, you also need an aggressive defense to prevent a conviction and harsh penalties.
Contact a Woodbury Domestic Abuse Lawyer for Assistance Right Away
Orders of protection should always be taken seriously. Even if you are challenging the order in court, you should abide by the terms of any existing order. If you are accused of a violation, seek help from a Woodbury domestic abuse lawyer at JS Defense, PA. Call (651) 968-9652 or request a free consultation online today.