How Long Can a Restraining Order Last in New Jersey?

A restraining order may be imposed when the court wants to keep a defendant away from the alleged victim. Restraining orders often come up in more violent cases, especially in domestic disputes where the victim may be in danger of future harm by the defendant. For defendants, restraining orders keep them away from their friends and families. Many defendants bound by restraining orders want to know if or when the orders expire.

In some cases, restraining orders are only temporary and expire once the case is resolved. Other orders are final and may be issued as part of a defendant’s final sentence if they are found guilty. These final orders can last indefinitely with no expiration date. However, while a restraining order may be indefinite, it is not necessarily permanent. Orders can be lifted with the victim’s consent or by a challenge from the defendant.

If you are facing a restraining order, you may be kept away from your family and children. You may even have to leave your home if you live with the alleged victim, such as romantic partners or spouses. Contact our Atlantic City protective order defense lawyers about getting the order against you lifted. Call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956 to schedule a free legal consultation.

How Long Before Restraining Orders Expire in New Jersey

The duration of your restraining order depends on what kind of restraining order is in place and for what purpose. Some restraining orders are only temporary, while others may last indefinitely. Temporary restraining orders (TROs) are often imposed in the beginning or middle of proceedings and are only meant to last until the case is resolved. In some cases, the TRO is imposed at the start of the case if it is obvious the victim needs protecting. Other times, a victim may request a TRO if they believe they are being threatened by the defendant or otherwise feel unsafe.

TROs are common in domestic violence cases because courts want to protect victims from abusers, especially when the two share a very close relationship. However, victims often need protection before a court can issue a final ruling. If a defendant is found guilty, the TRO will expire, but a final restraining order may be made a permanent part of the final sentence.

A final restraining order will likely last indefinitely. However, indefinite does not mean permanent. A final restraining order will only last as long as needed, which may be indefinitely in some cases. However, if the order becomes unnecessary, such as by the parties reconciling, it may be lifted. If you need help lifting a restraining order, call our New Jersey restraining order defense lawyers for assistance.

How Restraining Orders Work in New Jersey

Courts impose restraining orders in situations where a victim or a witness is unsafe. These are common in domestic violence cases but may come up in any case where a victim or witness is threatened. Restraining orders work by requiring the defendant to stay away from the victim. This includes staying away from any place the victim is likely to be, such as their home, school, or work.

A restraining order can cover more than one person. For example, in a domestic violence case, a restraining order may require the defendant to stay away from the victim and stay away from their children. In cases where the defendant and victim share children, the defendant is forbidden from seeing their own kids. While a restraining order is meant to protect people, it may also divide your family.

Restraining orders limit your physical contact with the victim as well as any other communications. There can be no phone calls, letters, emails, or text messages to the victim under a restraining order. The same goes for other interested persons, such as children or friends and family of the victim.

Depending on the nature of the restraining order, you may be out of contact with various loved ones for some time. Your order could last only until the end of your case. However, you may be barred from seeing the people you care about forever. Our New Jersey restraining order defense lawyers can help you challenge these restrictions and hopefully see your family again.

When Restraining Orders Can Be Lifted in New Jersey

Restraining orders can last indefinitely, but they do not have to. Under certain conditions, the court can lift a restraining order, and you can see your family and loved ones again. In most cases, a restraining order can be lifted when it is no longer necessary or when its terms are overly restrictive.

Restraining orders are frequently lifted or vacated when the parties involved decide to reconcile. Reconciliation can be based on numerous reasons and does not always mean the parties have resumed a romantic relationship. In some cases, the parties want the restraining order lifted so they can more effectively co-parent their children. Other times, the victim has forgiven the defendant and believes the order is no longer necessary.

If the restraining order cannot be lifted by mutual consent, it can be challenged for being unnecessary or overly restrictive. For example, suppose sufficient time has passed since the order was imposed, and you have abided by the restraining order for the entire time. In that case, you may be able to get the order lifted because it is no longer needed to protect the victim, even if the victim challenged the motion to lift the order. You can support your motion to lift the order by showing you have received any court-ordered counseling or treatment, stayed away from the victim and anyone else covered by the order, and had no run-ins with the law since the order was imposed.

Courts are hesitant to lift restraining orders when the victim protests, so getting an order lifted without mutual consent may be challenging. However, if we can show the court you have truly reformed, we can get the order lifted so you can see your family and children again. Call our Ocean City restraining order defense lawyers for help.

Contact Our New Jersey Restraining Order Defense Attorneys for Assistance

If you have been hit with a restraining order and now cannot see your children or other loved ones, please call our offices for help. Our New Jersey restraining order defense attorneys can help you fight the order against you and hopefully have it lifted. Call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956 to schedule a free legal consultation.

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