If you are served with a restraining order, it’s important to stay calm. You can fight a restraining order by following a few steps. These include responding to the restraining order and attending your hearing.
Seeking An Attorney
The first step that you should take if you are served with a restraining order is to speak with an attorney. There are different types of restraining orders that will dictate who you talk to. Typically, lawyers will have a specialty that they can market to clients. If you received a restraining order that is related to a criminal investigation, you would want to speak with an attorney who specializes in criminal defense. In contrast, an attorney who specializes in family law would be the type of attorney you would want to call if you are in the middle of a divorce and received a restraining order from an estranged spouse.
Being Served And Your Response
There are three different ways that you can be served with a restraining order:
– Through the mail
– At court
– In person
Regardless of the location where you are served, is important that you stay calm so that you can quickly address the situation. You do not want to get angry or try to argue with the person who is serving you, especially if it’s a judge — it will not be positive for your case. By going to an attorney, you can speak with a professional who understands how to respond to a restraining order. In most jurisdictions, a form is available so that you can fill it out and file it with the court. This is one of the best ways to respond to a restraining order.
Be sure to fill out the form and file a response soon after receiving the restraining order. This will ensure that your response is available far ahead of your hearing date. By doing so, it will give a judge time to examine what you wrote in the response. Typically, a judge will want to prepare for your hearing date by going over the details of the case before the actual hearing date is held.
Understanding And Complying With The Order
Even if you feel that the restraining order is unfair, you must abide by it until you are seen by a judge. It’s a good idea to talk to an attorney who can help give you details on the actions that you must avoid. As an example, you may be restrained from initiating contact with the person through any means. In addition, there may be stipulations that you have to stay a certain distance away from the other person or the restraining order may state that you are prohibited from buying a firearm — some restraining orders will even stipulate that you must hand over all of your weapons.
Attending The Hearing
An attorney can help you prepare for your hearing. You’ll want to have copies of documents that are related to your restraining order and response. If you need to have any other documents, your attorney can assist you with that.
It’s important to arrive early at the courthouse so that you don’t miss your hearing. When you are in front of the judge, stay calm, professional, respectful and courteous. While following these steps doesn’t totally ensure that your restraining order will be dropped, it does provide the best chance that the outcome will be positive.
Jim Treebold is a North Carolina based writer. He lives by the mantra of “Learn 1 new thing each day”! Jim loves to write, read, pedal around on his electric bike and dream of big things. Drop him a line if you like his writing, he loves hearing from his readers!