If your significant other threatens to hurt you, and you are in fear of imminent serious bodily injury, a Judge may enter a civil Domestic Violence Order of Protection in your favor. Our state statutes protect not only those individuals that have been physically abused, but those that are in fear of being abused. In addition, the threats that your significant other made to you may possibly be a criminal offense for which he or she could be charged.
In addition to immediately contacting your local police department regarding the threats, there are many free agencies that can assist you in seeking a civil Domestic Violence Order of Protection from the Court:
The Women’s Commission
United Family Services
The Battered Women’s Shelter
Depending on the specifics of your case, these agencies may be able to provide assistance in your application for a Domestic Violence Order of Protection. When filing your Complaint for a Domestic Violence Order of Protection, be honest and provide the specific details of the physical abuse and/or threats from your abuser that have placed you in fear of imminent serious bodily injury. If an act of domestic violence against you has occurred, do not hesitate to reach out to these agencies, as many are set up to receive telephone calls after-hours. After your initial ex parte (without the abuser present in the courtroom) hearing before a Judge, at which time you may be awarded a temporary Order of Protection, you may want to hire a family law attorney to assist you at the full return hearing when your abuser will be present (and likely with an attorney). Pursuant to state and local statutes, the return hearing is required to take place within 10 days of the initial hearing.
Eric C. Trosch
Board Certified in Family Law