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How Do I File for a No Contact Order?

Larger court systems typically have a court that deals with protective order requests.
The local prosecutor's office might handle protective orders in smaller areas.
A person may seek a no contact order if he or she is the victim of violence.
A no contact order will expire according to guidelines set out by the judge.
Phone calls may be prohibited under a no contact order.
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  • Written By: Renee Booker
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 07 October 2014
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A no contact order, often called a restraining order or protective order, is an official order of the court prohibiting the respondent from having contact with the petitioner. The way a petitioner files for the order often varies by jurisdiction, as well as by the purpose for which the order is sought. Usually, the process includes filing an official petition through the local prosecutor's office or a specific court dedicated to hearing such cases. In some situations, a protective order will be filed on behalf of a victim by the prosecutor as part of an ongoing criminal case.

In larger court systems within the United States, there is often a court that is dedicated to handling requests for protective orders. When a dedicated court exists, the petitioner — the person requesting the order — can usually get the fill-in-the blank forms needed to petition for the no contact order. In smaller court systems, the petitioner may be able to obtain assistance and guidance from the local prosecutor's office. The petitioner will need the full name and address of the respondent — the person who the petitioner is requesting the court prohibit from having contact — in order to complete the forms.

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The petitioner must complete a petition for a protective order. The petition must include the petitioner's information as well as the legal grounds under which the judge may grant the order. A summons must also be completed and filed with the court so that the respondent can be notified of the petition. The petitioner must provide an address where the respondent may be served with a copy of the petition and court date information.

When the grounds alleged in the petition are incidences of domestic violence, a judge may enter an ex parte order immediately on receipt and review of the petition. An ex parte order is a temporary order granted by the judge without the respondent being allowed to defend the allegations. In this case, it will order the respondent to have no contact with the petitioner, but it will usually expire within 30 days. A hearing will be ordered by the court within the 30 days to give the respondent the opportunity to defend himself or herself against the allegations. The judge may then make the order permanent or terminate the ex parte order.

When a no contact order is requested as part of a criminal case, the prosecuting attorney will usually request the order during the initial hearing. Restraining orders stemming from criminal cases are frequently requested to protect the victim of a crime from harassment or threats made by the defendant. For example, if an employee of a convenience store was robbed, the prosecuting attorney may request an order prohibiting the defendant from contacting the victim in any way.

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amypollick
Post 9

@anon320851: I'd bet my next paycheck that your ex put one of his buddies up to doing that. The police don't call to inform you about a no-contact order, and they sure as heck don't leave gift bags on your door.

The police don't even serve a summons, usually. They are either mailed, or if served in person, this is done by a deputy sheriff, an attorney or other officer of the court. And yes, you have to get a summons in writing, certified by your local circuit court, and signed by a circuit court judge. They don't call you and tell you about it on the phone.

In any case, your ex sounds like a creep and a jerk and I wouldn't call him or have anything to do with him, anyway. If the "police" calls continue, remind the caller that the police department has no need to block their phone numbers, and that impersonating a police officer is a felony in most states.

anon320851
Post 8

I got a blocked number phone call claiming it was the police. They said my ex-boyfriend is there, and if I send an e-mail or I call him, he will file criminal charges.

The police (or that's who they claim to be) called me another time for me leaving a gift bag on his doorknob.

Can they get involved if I never threatened him, nor did I harass him with repeated calls?

Isn't it up to a judge to give this order? Do I have to be present to answer these charges. Help!

Kristee
Post 7

@orangey03 - Sometimes, letting a person know that you are serious about getting them to leave you alone is all that it takes. Then, there are times that you have to go a little further.

My friend had to get a temporary restraining order against her ex-husband. Just the fact that she had the guts to go and take legal action to get him to leave her alone was enough to make him stay away. He didn't want any legal trouble, and this finally helped him move on.

orangey03
Post 6

I thought I was going to have to get a no contact order against my ex-boyfriend when I was seventeen. After I broke up with him, he continued to call me multiple times a day and leave me messages. He also would drive by my house really slowly.

If he found out that I was at a friend's house, he would watch the house! Once, he left a broken box of chocolates outside the door of the house where I had spent the night with a friend.

After he dumped a sack of poems that he had written to me during our relationship at the edge of my driveway, I actually got the nerve to call him and tell him to leave me alone. I threatened him by saying that I would get a restraining order if he didn't, and surprisingly, that was all it took.

Oceana
Post 5

@wavy58 - The punishment for a no contract order violation probably varies by state, but in general, it depends on how severe the violation was. If you just tried to talk to the person from across the street, then that might be a misdemeanor, but if you actually assaulted them, then that would be a felony.

I've heard of some people getting away with big fines, while others had to spend time in jail. Either way, the punishment is bad enough to make the person think twice about violating the order.

wavy58
Post 4

What is the punishment for breaking the rules of a no contact order? I just wonder if it is severe enough to motivate the person who is under it to stay away and adhere to the terms.

pleonasm
Post 3

@Ana1234 - I've had to get a restraining order before and the police were nothing but nice about it. They have a set of procedures that they need to go through, but most of the time they've seen what happens when people who are in trouble are ignored. And if anything in the long run a serious no contact restraining order is going to mean less work for them.

With that said, getting a legal opinion is also good for obvious reasons.

Ana1234
Post 2

@pastanaga - I like to think that's mostly true, but in reality sometimes the police just aren't going to be useful. They are human and some of them are jerks. Most of them aren't, of course, but people who need a no contact order are often worried about being believed by the authorities and they need to be prepared for some of the authorities treating them badly.

You can't give up just because some people might look down on you, or whatever. You have a right to feel safe and if a protective order will do that, then that's what you should get no matter what anyone says.

pastanaga
Post 1

It's definitely good to have your own idea of what's going on with a no contact order but I think if you haven't got any experience of the courts that you should try to find someone to help you with the process. It's not the kind of thing you want to get wrong or leave with a loophole and you need to have a layman's understanding of what exactly you're getting.

You don't have to hire a lawyer, as there are places that will find you legal help for free and you might even be able to get the police to help you. This is particularly true in the case of domestic violence as the police will be keen to make sure that they have the power to stop the offender in their tracks if they threaten you again.

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