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Domestic Violence FAQ

Domestic violence generally refers to a list of 14 offenses upon a person who is protected by the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (PDVA). The 14 offenses are: homicide, assault, terroristic threats, kidnapping, criminal restraint, false imprisonment, sexual assault, criminal sexual contact, lewdness, criminal mischief, burglary, criminal trespass, harassment, or stalking.

Who are the victims of domestic violence?

Generally, you may be a victim of domestic violence if you have one of the following relationships with the offender: marriage, separation, divorced, living together in the same household in the present or past, a person whom the victim dated, or a person with whom you share a common child or anticipated common child.

What is a restraining order?

 A restraining order is meant to protect a victim of domestic violence. A temporary restraining order (TRO or T.R.O.) can be obtained and enforced quickly in order to create a safe environment for the victim. A final restraining order (FRO or F.R.O.) requires a hearing that defendant will know about and is more difficult to obtain. If a final restraining order is issued, it will not expire until it is dropped by the plaintiff after a court hearing.

What if the defendant does not abide by the restraining order?

If the defendant does not abide by the order, the victim of domestic violence may call the police to have criminal charges filed. This will ultimately lead to an arrest and possibly a criminal conviction.

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