Courts take domestic violence cases very seriously. This is why a judge is often inclined to issue orders meant to temporarily protect a plaintiff against an alleged defendant. If you find yourself facing a protection order, you will need the help of a Boise domestic violence attorney to deal with it.
Protection orders issued in domestic violence cases can drastically impact your life. Once such an order is issued, you may suddenly find yourself unable to see your children or go to your home. This is why it is immensely important to understand how civil protection orders work and how you can deal with them.
What Is a No Contact Order?
A No Contact Order, also known as an NCO, is a kind of protection order which is issued by a court after a person has been charged with a crime. If you have a fight with your spouse and the spouse contacts the authorities about it, a preliminary investigation is launched into allegations about your conduct.
If there is reasonable evidence and you are charged, it is only then that a No Contact Order can be issued by the court. However, the court can issue a Civil Protection Order which can still temporarily bar you from contacting the plaintiff.
What Is a Civil Protection Order?
A Civil Protection Order is quite similar to an NCO but it is temporary and it can be issued even when no one has been formally charged in a domestic violence offense. In the example above, your spouse can get a CPO from a judge right after alleging domestic violence on your part. The judge will not need to consider any evidence or wait for any investigation to issue such an order.
A CPO may bar you from contacting your spouse directly or through any third party. Such an order may also require you to maintain a designated minimum distance from the plaintiff while they stay at home, go out, or are at work. Failure to meet this requirement may result in a misdemeanor charge against the defendant.
Filing a Petition for a Civil Protection Order
Anyone can file a petition for a CPO against a spouse or partner with whom they live. The presence of a current domestic relationship is a key requirement in filing this kind of petition. The petition can be filed if the petitioner feels harassed, endangered, stalked, or expects to face harm in instances of domestic violence. These specifications of a petition are defined in Idaho Code Section 18-7907.
In nearly all petitions of this kind, a judge will grant a CPO against the defendant. The CPO is typically temporary and remains in place until a hearing is scheduled regarding the petition.
The Civil Protection Order Hearing
Once you have been served a CPO as a defendant or respondent in a petition, you are legally entitled to request a hearing within 14 days. At the hearing, you and the plaintiff appear before the judge. At the hearing, the judge seeks to establish whether or not the protection order should be kept in place.
You can contest the civil protection order or let it be. If you decide to contest it, the burden of proof will be on the plaintiff to show that the protection order is necessary. However, the standard of proof used in such cases is “preponderance of evidence.” In other words, the plaintiff only needs to show that you are more likely than not to harm the plaintiff, meeting the 51% evidence threshold.
In doing so, the plaintiff may produce witness testimony as well as other pieces of evidence. You can produce your own witnesses and counter-evidence to argue why the protection order should be ended.
At the end of the hearing, the judge may decide whether to extend the CPO by another year or to lift it. If a domestic violence crime is later proved, the CPO may be upgraded to a No Contact Order.
Why Hire a Boise Domestic Battery Attorney?
If you have been charged with a domestic violence crime such as domestic battery, your partner may be successful in getting a permanent protection order. However, the conviction and the order itself can be unfair sometimes. This is why our Boise domestic battery attorneys can help you fight the allegation and the protection order.
We help you put up a strong defense against any allegations at the CPO hearing. With our legal help, you have better odds of having the protection order withdrawn. Call us today to discuss your case with our lawyers.