Domestic Violence Article


Order of Protection

What protection does the order of protection provide?

An order of protection requires the offender to do and not do some things.

The person that the order of protection applies to cannot:

1.    Commit an act of domestic violence,
2.    Contact the person protected or other people mentioned in the order of protection, and
3.    From coming near the residence, place of employment, school or other locations designated in the protective order. 

The court issuing the order of protection can also give the person protected by the order the use and possession of a residence where the victim and offender currently live.  This means the court can kick out the offender if the victim and offender live together when the court grants the order of protection. 

Additionally, the order of protection can prohibit the person that the order applies to from possessing a gun.  If the person already possesses a gun, the person must turn in the gun to law enforcement.

How does one apply for an order of protection?

A person applying for an order of protection must file a petition, in person, with an Arizona court. Arizona provides assistance with filing this petition because dealing with courts can be confusing and people are not familiar with this petition filing process.

There is no fee to file a Petition for Order of Protection.

When going to the court, the person applying for the Petition must take to the court the following information:

1.    A picture ID (if available.)
2.    An address of their residence, work, school, and all other addresses for which the person wants protection,
3.    Information about the person that one is seeking protection from, including that person’s name, address, date of birth, physical description and other identifying information including a social security number, if known.
4.    Dates the domestic violence occurred.  If there was a case number assigned to these incidents, bring the case number(s),
5.    If minor children are to be protected, take the names and dates of birth of the minors.  Also, take the minor’s social security numbers, if known.

The process of applying for the petition can least 2 hours or more.

Please also be aware that most courtrooms do not allow children.

Once you arrive at the courthouse and told the court you are there to file a Petition for a Protective Order, you will be directed to a Protective Order Center.
At the Protective Order Center, you will complete the necessary paperwork using a computerized Domestic Violence prompt system.

That paperwork will include a petition in which you will be required to provide specific acts of domestic violence and name each individual you believe should be included as a protected person. Court staff is available to help facilitate your completion of the necessary paperwork and to guide you through the process of filing the paperwork.

Once you have completed the paperwork, you must sign and swear or affirm to the truth of the petition in front of a person authorized to administer an oath.

After you complete the paperwork you will appear before a judge.  The judge may ask you questions about the petition and the domestic violence issues. If the judge determines you need protection, the judge will issue the Order of Protection. You will need to arrange to have the Petition and Order served on the person.

Orders of Protection are not valid until served. Serving the petition means formally giving the person affected by the petition a copy of the Petition for the Order of Protection and a copy of the signed Order of Protection. The person filing the petition has to see the petition is served, but cannot personally serve these papers. 

Only law enforcement or a registered process server can serve the Order of Protection.  The court will give you a list of Law Enforcement Agencies that can serve the Order of Protection. Law Enforcement Agencies do not charge a fee to serve the papers. 

For how long is an Order of Protection good?

Once served, an Order of Protection is good for one year from the date the Order is served.

Additional Resources

Here is a link to the Maricopa County web page that explains orders of protection.  The web page includes an excellent video explaining what to expect on the day you file the petition.

https://www.superiorcourt.maricopa.gov/superiorcourt/protectiveordercenter/oop.asp

Final thoughts

The Maricopa County video ends with a very important statement.  “Please remember, the order is only a piece of paper. You must take steps to insure your safety be actively engaging in a safety plan.”

Comments:

QUESTIONS

  • My Brother is a 32 combat veteran of the 5th Special forces group. He was arrested yesterday for aggravated assault. He is heavily medicated due to injuries and may be a threat to his family. His wife called me yesterday asking me to help but I do not know what I can do. Can some one offer me some advice on what, as his brother, I can do?
  • I have an order of protection against my husband that has not been served to him yet. If I agree to meet him at the police station parking lot to exchange our daughter, will the judge dismiss the order if my husband later contests it?
  • In a child custody case, I lost my children to my ex. My children & I suffered alot of abuse at his hands. Now he has the children & lives in another city & jurisdiction in Arizona. The info and dr. reports I took in were not even looked at by the judge. Seemed her mind was made up early on. Can I request a new emergency hearing and also request a change in judge as I am told the abuse on the children has started again and I don't know what to do to protect my children.
  • CAN A PLAINTIFF (VICTIM) BE ARRESTED FOR TALKING TO THE DEFENDANT WITH THE ORDER OF PROTECTION IN PLACE
  • My coucelor at SU VOZ VALE informed me i can fix my immigrant status, using the police report i filed on my ex boyfriend for the domestic violence? How and where do i start?
  • If I have an order of protection and my ex- husband and or wife wants to live near by so that our child could walk to his mothers our father's house, what are the laws for this , I asked the judge, and he said that in the order of protection they no longer state a specific distance however the judge advised me to seek legal advice.
  • My boyfriend was arrested last night for aggravated assault against me. I told the police that he has a history of mental illness and that he needed to go to a psychiatric hospital but they took him to jail anyway. I am not pressing charges but I am afraid the state will. How do I help him get the charge dropped and get mental help?
  • Can I get an order of protection against my husband for verbally and emotionally abusing me and our teen daughter? There is no act of physical violence, but there was a reported act if violence five years ago. Although I don't have any fears if him hurting us physically there is almost daily verbal abuse, yelling, name calling, etc.
  • I tried to get the order of protection against me on behalf of my daughter quashed and my ex was at the hearing with a lawyer, witnesses, evidence, etc. and I was there with just me and my fiance. Can I file to get another hearing since I didn't know that is what to expect. She filed it and I wasn't there. Why did she get to be there when I was suppose to plea my side?
  • my exwifes boyfriend physically abused her and harrassed her he left bruses on her face that took over a month to heal i got her away from him and somehow he talked his way outa her pressing charges she earsed all the pocture and texts he sent her then she lied to me and said she filed a police report and she didnt he now lives with her and she says now he barley touched her now we have the kids seperated and we havnt exchanged in 5 months and she wount answer texts calls or emails i need to keep him away from my kids since shes met him he has made her choose him over her kids what do i do

STORIES

  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • I just helped my mother, age 89, deal with her Medicare HMO. . .

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OTHER LEGAL RESOURCES

  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
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