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Domestic Violence, Temporary Restraining Orders and Final Restraining Orders - What You Need to Know

Sep 30, 2013 @ 12:51 PM — by Michael Green

Domestic violence is a serious subject that needs to be addressed on many levels both legally and procedurally.  Michael S. Green has had a great deal of experience with domestic violence cases and final restraining order hearings and trials.

Parties need to be aware that past allegations of domestic violence are to be considered by the Court when determining whether or not a Final Restraining Order will be issued.  When filing a domestic violence complaint, prior allegations must be part of the four corners of any complaint in order to be considered by the Court.

Generally, if a client is concerned about domestic violence, they should be aware that if they feel threatened by the actions of the other party, they can file a domestic violence complaint with their local police station and/or their county family court.  If as a preliminary matter, it is determined that the party has met the Domestic Violence Statute elements, a temporary restraining order (TRO) will be issued and a date for a final restraining order hearing within ten days will be scheduled.  Generally, if the parties are living together, the party accused of domestic violence will be served by the police the TRO and will have to leave the marital residence until the FRO hearing.

Proofs that the parties may bring to Court may include text messages forwarded to email and printed out, recordings of the other party (of calls they were a party to), phone records from your provider, and pictures of any physical injuries.  It will be determined by the Court what evidence will be admitted.  Witnesses of the events are also to be brought to Court for either party.

At the Final Restraining Order hearing, a mini-trial occurs where both parties give testimony, submit evidence and may have witnesses testify.  The police officer at the scene may also be subpoened to testify and any discovery that the police may have may also be supoened for trial e.g. pictures taken by the police.

In addition, and often very important, child support, spousal support, possession of the marital residence, other temporary support, child custody, parenting time, attorneys fees are all issues that may or may not be dealt with by the Court if the TRO is converted to an FRO.

Being prepared for a Final Restraining Order hearing is the most important part of obtaining a just result.  If you have a domestic violence issue, please call our offices at 732-390-0480 or 201-242-1119 to help you.


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