Who Can Get a Domestic Violence Restraining Order?


If you are in a situation in which you believe you need protection for your own safety (in relation to your home life), taking swift action is always advised. A dedicated California family law attorney with considerable experience successfully handling domestic violence restraining orders will help to ensure that you obtain the legal protection you need when you need it, which makes seeking professional legal guidance paramount. Better understanding these protection orders and who they assist, however, can help you better assess your own situation and can help guide you toward the legal counsel you need.

Is It Domestic Violence

What makes the act of violence in question domestic violence is your relationship to the perpetrator, and if your abuser is any of the following, it qualifies as domestic violence:

  • Your current or former spouse
  • Your current or former boyfriend or girlfriend
  • Someone with whom you have a child in common
  • Someone you currently live with (or formerly lived with)
  • Someone to whom you are related through either blood or marriage

The Violent Act in Question

The State of California employs a broad definition of domestic violence, and each of the following actions is included:

  • The other person caused you to be physically injured or attempted to physically injure you.
  • The other person assaulted you sexually.
  • The other person caused you to fear that someone else (a third party) was in immediate danger of being seriously physically injured
  • The other person attacked, molested, struck, or battered (used force against you)
  • The other person destroys property that belongs to you
  • The other person harassed or threatened you in person, on the phone, via electronic communication, or via another means
  • The other person stalked you
  • The other person disturbed your peace, which refers to actions or conduct that interrupts your emotional calm and, including coercive control

Coercive Control

Coercive control is a complicated legal classification that deserves careful attention of its own. Coercive control refers to a behavior pattern that disrupts your personal liberty and free will. Examples that fit the bill include:

  • Actions that are intended to isolate you from your friends, family, and other people who provide support
  • Actions that are intended to deprive you of your basic needs
  • Actions that are intended to monitor, regulate, or control your daily activities, your movement, your communication with others, or your finances
  • Actions that are intended to force or intimidate you into not doing something that it is your right to do or into doing something that it is your right to choose not to do (threats that are based on your immigration status – or suspected immigration status – are included)
  • Actions that qualify as reproductive coercion, which refers to taking control of your reproductive autonomy through force, the threat of force, or intimidation (examples include deliberately interfering with your use of contraception, gaining access to your reproductive health files, using unreasonable force to coerce you into becoming pregnant, and engaging in coercive tactics to either control or attempt to control the outcome of your pregnancy)

The Elderly and Dependent Adults

The elderly and adults who are dependent upon others for their care can also qualify for protective orders when they are neglected or physically or financially abused by anyone else or when they are deprived of necessary care by a custodian. These protective orders are called restraining orders to prevent elder or dependent adult abuse.

Domestic Violence Restraining Orders

There are different types of restraining orders that family law firms assist with:

  • Temporary domestic violence restraining orders that last from 20 to 25 days
  • Permanent domestic violence restraining orders that can last up to 5 years

While the terms or conditions of these restraining orders can vary considerably from case to case, they all prohibit the person being restrained from contacting the person who obtained the restraining order. The kind of contact that is typically prohibited includes all the following:

  • In-person contact
  • Phone calls, emails, letters and packages, text messages, and other forms of electronic communication
  • Interaction on social media

An Experienced California Family Law Attorney Can Help

The compassionate family law attorneys at Irwin & Irwin, LLP – proudly serving Orange County, Los Angeles County, and some areas in San Bernardino County – dedicate their long-standing practice to zealously protecting the legal rights and safety of clients like you. Your case is important, so please don’t hesitate to contact or call us 714-222-3992 for more information today.