What Is an Order of Protection for Children?
An Order of Protection is a legal measure that can keep a child safe when a child is in danger from a parent or older sibling. The Order of Protection is a judge’s mandate to keep an alleged abuser (usually a family member) at a distance from the child to protect them from further abuse or from having to endure an unhealthy living situation. In dire circumstances when harm is imminent, a judge can enter an Order of Protection on very short notice, even without the alleged abuser’s knowledge.
Once the petition is submitted, a judge weighs the specific facts of each particular case before granting the order. If the order is granted, it will require the alleged abuser to stay a certain distance away from the child and may go as far as banning him/her from having any contact at all with the child (even a long distance phone call). The judge may also require the abuser to take additional actions, such as attending anger management classes. Although Orders of Protection are temporary, in extreme cases a judge can rightfully issue a Permanent Restraining Order, which can last indefinitely.
Sometimes in the case of complicated divorces, a judge may issue an order based upon evidence that is later determined to be false. Even if the Order of Protection is based on faulty evidence, the accused should still strictly comply with the Order of Protection until they can present the required contrary evidence to have it lifted . Otherwise, they may face the severe penalties of violating the order, which may include arrest, jail time and significant fines.
Our legal system is well equipped to protect the most vulnerable of our society: our children. If you are in a situation where your child is in need of an Order of Protection, the attorneys from Gardi, Haught, Fischer & Bhosale LTD are here to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us at 847.944.9400.