Restraining Orders, sometimes called protective orders, are intended to protect victims of abuse from their abusers. Restraining orders are common in cases where the defendant shares a close personal relationship with the victim. However, they may also be used in cases where the defendant and victim are strangers. Restraining orders are for the benefit of victims but often come at very high costs to the defendant. Restraining orders can prevent defendants from seeing family members and other loved ones who might be close with the victim. Lifting a restraining order would allow a defendant to resume seeing those close to them. Read on to learn more from the Atlantic City protective order defense attorneys at the Law Offices of John J. Zarych about lifting restraining orders in New Jersey.
What is a Restraining Order in NJ?
Restraining orders are issued by the courts, usually at the alleged victim’s request, in cases where the victim’s immediate safety may be in jeopardy. The purpose of the restraining order is to keep the defendant away from the victim for the trial’s duration if the defendant is out on bail. Requests for restraining orders are typically granted if the victim can demonstrate a history of domestic abuse or violence between the parties. Restraining orders are also commonly imposed as part of a final sentence in cases of domestic violence. Convicted defendants will typically be ordered to adhere to the terms of a restraining order and stay away from the victim.
Restraining orders are issued to protect victims who may be in danger of violent retaliation from their abusers. The orders are designed to protect victims but infringe on the rights and liberties of defendants. For example, a restraining order may require that a defendant stay at least several hundred feet away from the victim, keep away from the victim’s home, and have zero contact with the victim. While this ensures the victim’s safety, it may prevent the defendant from seeing other family members who might live with the victim, such as children.
Getting a Restraining Order Lifted in NJ
Having a restraining order lifted can be difficult in many cases. The courts have a great interest in keeping victims of domestic violence safe from their alleged abusers. A restraining order may only be temporary, but the damage caused by a violent abuser can be long lasting, even permanent. Convincing a court that a restraining order is not necessary is challenging but not impossible.
Getting a restraining order lifted will require another hearing, which both parties to the order must attend. At this hearing, you will have the opportunity to present information demonstrating that the protective order imposes too much of a burden or is unnecessary. It is also possible to have a restraining order lifted by the mutual agreement of both parties. This kind of agreement is common when the parties have reconciled and wish to drop the entire case.
Is There a Hearing for Lifting a Restraining Order in NJ?
There will be a hearing before a restraining order is imposed and before it is lifted. In both circumstances, each party is allowed to speak at the hearing and argue for or against the restraining
order. A restraining order can be lifted in a number of ways. Perhaps both parties have reconciled and no longer need the restraining order. It is also possible that the restraining order has become overly burdensome on the defendant. In any case, to lift the restraining order you must file a request to do so with the judge who imposed it.
Once you have filed to have the restraining order lifted, a hearing will be scheduled. At the hearing, both parties may make arguments and both parties may be represented by a Galloway Township restraining order violation attorney. It is crucial to show up to this hearing because it will continue whether or not you are there. If the hearing happens in your absence, the other party will be the only one who speaks regarding the restraining order, and you are highly unlikely to have it lifted. If you know you are unable to attend the hearing, your attorney can contact the court and try to have the hearing rescheduled.
What Happens if You Ignore a Restraining Order in NJ
The penalties for violating a restraining order can be harsh and must be taken seriously. Violating a restraining order will result in your arrest and new criminal charges against you. Violation of a restraining order in New Jersey will result in charges for a fourth-degree crime. Such a crime can be punished by up to 18 months in prison. This penalty will be in addition to any penalties that may be imposed as a result of your underlying charges. To avoid violating a restraining order, it is best to hire an Ocean City restraining order violation defense attorney who can help you have it lifted.
Additionally, once you violate the restraining order and you are arrested, the judge will decide whether or not you can be released on bail again. There is a chance the judge will decide you are too dangerous to let go, and you could be held without bail until your trial, which could be weeks or even months in some cases. Rather than risk violating a restraining order that may be overly burdensome, it is in your best interest to work with a Hamilton Township protective order violation attorney to get the order lifted.
Contact Our NJ Restraining Order Attorney
If you or someone you know is bound by a restraining order or a protective order in New Jersey, do not hesitate to contact the Law Offices of John J. Zarych. Our experienced legal team can help you get a restraining order lifted and help you see your family again. Call (609) 616-4956 to schedule a free legal consultation with our New Jersey restraining order attorney.