A restraining order (often called a protective order or a 209A order) is a legal order issued by a Massachusetts court. The order requires that one person avoid contact with another, either directly or through third party contact, as well as comply with other requirements. These may include not contacting children named in the order or entering the home you share with your spouse. Further, 209A orders may stay on your record for life.
Often a person who takes out a restraining order will do it "ex parte," meaning that they do it without the other person present. They simply fill out a form and appear before a judge. The judge usually enters the order and the opposing person is notified that the order is in effect. They will also be notified of a hearing that will take place in 10 days.
If someone you know is seeking a restraining order against you, you may have only a few days to respond. It is critical that you respond quickly. Contact the Medford, Massachusetts, law office of William Barabino by calling 781-393-5900 for a free and confidential consultation.
When Restraining Orders Are Used Against You
As an experienced criminal defense attorney, Mr. Barabino understands that restraining orders may be used for unintended purposes. They can be used to gain leverage in child custody proceedings, divorce proceedings and related probate matters. They may even be used by scorned lovers as punishment.
Whatever the reason a restraining order has been entered, it is up to you to respond to the restraining order at the 10-day hearing with all the evidence and witnesses necessary to convince the judge of your side of things. To do this, working with an experienced criminal defense attorney is critical.
If You Are Accused of Violating a Restraining Order
It can be very easy to violate a 209A order. Many people who have been accused of violating a domestic violence restraining order had no idea that their actions were prohibited. In fact, there are many events that lead to accusations of violation:
- Mailing a letter to the person
- Responding to a voice mail from your ex
- Initiating a third party contact (through a neighbor, relative or friend)
- Driving past the person's house
If you are accused of violating a restraining order, you could face even more severe consequences, including a criminal conviction, more than two years in the county jail and steep fines. It is critical that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney for your defense.
Contact William Barabino at 781-393-5900
If you have been accused of a restraining order violation, contact criminal defense attorney William Barabino by calling his Medford, Massachusetts, law office at 781-393-5900. You may also complete his online contact form.