If you are in imminent danger and need an Indiana order of protection, there are steps you can take that go as far as testifying in court. The fact of the matter is, that you have to be willing to face the person you are filing against in court or a protected room. So, how do you get an order of protection?
You can go online and fill out the paperwork, but it needs to be filed at your county’s courthouse. In order to obtain an order for protection, you must allege in your petition that you have been a victim of stalking, domestic violence, or sexual violence, then the court will decide if an ex parte order will be granted without a hearing and/or a hearing will be set on the matter. In the end, the court will decide to approve or deny the order of protection.
What is an Indiana Order of Protection?
In Indiana, as in every other state, laws are put in place to keep citizens safe from stalkers, abusers, kidnappers, and all individuals who choose to harm a person. An order of protection is a paper that is a contract good for two years or more, according to the courts, that a victim uses to keep a threatening person away from them and their family.
Many people have the idea and fear that these “papers” do not work. It is up to the victim to enforce the contents written in the order of protection. There is a limit to how far or close they can be from you. Should they come within the radius given on the paper, the person has the upper hand to bypass most rules and have the stalker or abuser arrested on the spot with no questions or problems asked.
Generally, protective orders prohibit the respondent from coming near or going to places they know the victim to be located, including their places of work, residence or other locations. If you obtain an order for protection, it is important to keep this document on you at all times, so you can provide it to the police in the event that respondent approaches you or comes to your residence.
Getting an Order of Protection
With today’s technology, it is quicker to process by filing online. All paperwork is found at the county courthouse, or you can go online and eFile the paperwork. There are tutorials to guide you in filling out the process as it answers any questions you may have. If there are still questions left over, the best suggestion is to get with a domestic violence attorney, like Trapp Law, LLC, to help you fill out and file the paperwork.
If the victim cannot produce sufficient evidence to support the order of protection claim, a hearing will occur before a judge. A respondent does not need to agree to a protective order. Instead, a court can issue and/or grant a protective order for up to two (2) years over the objection of a respondent, along with disqualifying the respondent from owning or possession a firearm.
It would be wise to have an attorney chosen just in case you end up in court and have to prove before a judge why you need an order of protection. Gather all your documents of dates, times, places, and all details available. Any witnesses will help the process along.
It is essential to remember that just because you filled out the order of protection and filed the paperwork at the courthouse, the judge will not automatically approve it. Many have been denied due to a lack of evidence as to the reason for the restraining order. This is where your attorney can help you.
What Can a Domestic Attorney Do to Help You Achieve the Order of Protection?
Any questions you have are there to advise and take on the tough questions. It is difficult to understand the law, especially when it continues to change with all the amendments. The attorneys are well trained to know the law, follow it, and fight for the rights of their clients.
Everyone deserves to live safely, and there may be other cases the attorney can go off of as a reference to help speed up the process and even win the judge’s approval quickly. This ensures the safety of the client.
An experienced attorney will likely know the judge and how they rule, especially the most experienced ones who have been attorneys for a long time. An attorney will have the experience to give you a clear idea of which way the judge will rule, given the facts of your situation.
As you can see, it helps to have the attorney by your side at one of the steps, preferably at the beginning stages. In many situations, they can cover most of the steps for you in achieving the order of protection.
When Does an Order of Protection Fail the System?
Everything is in the hands of the victim. Many times, stalkers or abusers will threaten the families, friends, and victims themselves to allow them to do as they wish. Calling 911, having a patrol unit close by, and getting with law enforcement is useless if the victim drops the charges out of fear.
The abuser uses the tactic of fear for the victim to watch out when they get out if the charges are not dropped. Then the victim drops the charges. Law enforcement has no choice but to drop the charges and release the abuser, putting the victim in more danger. This is when the paper becomes “just a piece of paper,” and the system fails.
The victim must stay on top of the order of protection, follow the contents and instructions it upholds, and not back down from danger when it matters most. This is the only way the system works, and when the order expires, the victim should continue to refile whether anything happened or not.
Contact Trapp Law LLC for Help
If you need help with obtaining an order of protection in Indianapolis, IN, contact us. When you schedule your case evaluation with our firm, we will be happy to answer all of your questions and set you on the right course for ensuring that you get your order or protection.