Protection Orders 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

  • Do I have a time limit during which to request a protection order?
  • I was contacted by the Sheriffs dept. and told an Order of Protection was served to me the past April. I was never served any documents or aware of this. How may I get a record (copy) of this service?
  • A court signed an Injunction Against Harrassment to protect me from my ex-boyfriend but I cannot afford to pay a process server to have the injunction served on him.  He is still harrassing me but leaves before the police arrive.  What should I do?
  • I am the mother and legal guardian of my children. My mother does not like my boyfriend who isn't the father of my two eldest children but the father of my youngest. My mother filed for and was granted a protective Order against my boyfriend for my two eldest children. Is this legal?
  • where can I obtain a copy of restraining order placed against me in Feb 2015 by my girlfriend/Phoenix Court? keeping me away from property as well as her?
  • I am the petitioner of a protective order and the defendant has not been served yet. Our court date is next week. What is gonna happen? Will they dismiss it or continue it.
  • My boyfriend and I live in the same house as his father and a roommate, his father is always getting upset over nothing and instead of talking civilly with us, he yells and picks a fight, my boyfriend has anxiety as well as some other medical issues, and cannot deal with this, and it normally leads to loud verbal arguments. My question is are we able to get a no contact order on his father and roommate while we are living in the same house?
  • Is there such thing as a modified restraining order that stipulates the defendant may not come to my place of residence during certain hours? I don't want the defendant to not be able to have ANY contact with me, I just don't want him on the premises during certain hours becuz he is disruptive while I am trying to conduct my home business.
  • My wife has a OOP against me,is filing for custody of our 3 yr old son that I have no parenting time for at least a year.Since marrying CPS has been contacted multiple times (by father) accusing us of providing an unsafe environment,once specifically that I was abusive and a seperate time that I punched and kicked her 10 yr old down the hall.All found unsubstantiated.The latest accusation is the worst.That I have touched my stepdaughter inappropriately.I am under investigation for the last two months.I am innocent.Can she do this?I am being treated as a criminal.Can I not get shared custody?
  • can I get a protective order against my minor daughters minor boyfriend

STORIES

  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • If you get a divorce, make sure your date of birth is on the Decree if your name is changing!. . .
  • 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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