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Frequently Asked Order of Protection Questions

Are you living on Long Island? Do you have questions about a Family Court issued order of protection? Are you in search of an Order of Protection? The Law Offices of Joshua Adam Kittenplan, located in Commack, is here to assist you.

While working with clients in both Nassau and Commack for over 18 years, we noticed that many need a clearer explanation about order of protections and how it can be managed. Our frequently asked order of protection questions, answered below:

What Is an Order of Protection?

Defined by Law New York, An Order of Protection, also known as a restraining order, is a court order that tells one person what form of contact is allowed between two people.

An order of protection can require a person to stay away from another person, their home, school and work. The order could also prohibit some types of contact with the other person, or even all contact. The court can make exceptions such as to arrange visitation with a child.

On the other hand, an Order of Protection may allow some contact. However, it will order a person to commit no crimes against the other person or do anything offensive toward the other person.

What are the differences between Family Court and Criminal Court order of protections?

The main differences between Family and Criminal Court Orders of Protection are as follows, according to New York Courts:

  • It can be easier to get a temporary (or emergency) order of protection from a Family Court than going through criminal court.

  • Criminal charges must be filed by the police or District Attorney.

  • In Family Court, the case is between you and the respondent whereas the criminal case is between the People of the State of New York and the defendant. In this scenario, the defendant has been charged with crimes.

  • Family Court requires a lower level of proof (“preponderance of the evidence”) and criminal court requires a higher level of proof (“beyond a reasonable doubt”).

  • You must be present in court and participate for family court orders but in criminal court the District Attorney may be able to handle the case without you if there is other evidence of the crime.

  • Records are private in family court, but the courtrooms are open to the public and records and courtrooms are open to the public in criminal court.

  • In Family Court cases, you can decide to stop the case by withdrawing your petition during the case but in criminal court cases you can’t stop the case if you decide you no longer want to continue. Only the District Attorney can withdraw the case. You can speak to the District Attorney, but the decision is not yours.

For Family Court cases, the case can result in a final Order of Protection that the respondent must follow. Similarly, in criminal court cases, the case can result in a final order of protection but the case can also result in criminal convictions and sometimes send the defendant to prison.

Can an order of protection be changed?

From Law New York:

  • Either person can ask the court to change the order of protection. The Family Court cannot change an order that was issued by the criminal court.
  • The court might add exceptions to an order of protection to allow visitation with a child.
  • The court might change a “refrain from” order of protection to a “stay away” order of protection if the situation worsened.
  • The court might change a “stay away” order of Protection to a “refrain from”order of protection if the situation improves and the two people need or want to have contact.

Before the order expires, it can be extended for a longer period, if there is a good reason for that.

When is an Order of Protection necessary?

Orders of protection may be necessary if you have suffered:

  • Domestic violence
  • Stalking
  • Reckless endangerment
  • Assault or attempted assault
  • Any other conduct that can threaten your well-being

You may pursue an Order of Protection if the other parent of your child:

  • Is a user of illegal drugs
  • Has harassed you or the child
  • Has serious mental health issues
  • Has threatened or committed physical abuse of you or the child

How can the Law Offices of Joshua Adam Kittenplan assist me?

At the Law Office of Joshua Adam Kittenplan on Long Island, we handle many Order of Protection cases, offering our clients vigorous representation at such an important time in their lives. Strong advocacy is an essential part of the order of protection process. Securing an order of protection or fighting against an unjust order of protection is often a critical juncture in a divorce or child custody case.

When you need to file an Order of Protection, the Law Office of Joshua Adam Kittenplan can help you through the court process. We take the time to interview you personally and keep you involved in the legal strategy. We are always available through email to help our clients and provide prompt responses.

Reach us via email: joshua@kittenplanlaw.com

Call us directly: (631) 499-0606

New York Attorney Advertising. This is written for general information only. The information presented should not be considered formal legal advice. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome

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