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Here are a few important things to know about domestic violence and obtaining an Order of Protection:
· Your abuser does not need to be your spouse, nor must you live together in order to obtain an Order of Protection. In 2008, a new law was passed that says people who are/ were in an intimate relationship are eligible to get an order of protection in family court.
· An “intimate” relationship does not have to mean a sexual one. To decide if a relationship is intimate, the judge will look at the nature (type) of the relationship, and how often and for how long the people in the relationship were in contact.
· An Order of Protection can help stop stalking, harassment, abuse, and imminent threats of violence for you and/or your children.
·There are 2 different orders you can get: (1) “REFRAIN FROM” orders prohibit the abuser from continuing to threaten, harm or harass the victim; (2) “STAY AWAY” orders are more protective than refrain from orders. In addition to ordering the abuser to refrain from stalking, harassing, threatening or abusing, a stay away order also prohibits the abuser from coming within a certain distance of the victim’s residence or place of employment.