Some divorces and domestic splits become violent and threatening, with one spouse or partner placing the other in fear of physical harm to him- or herself or some other person. Sometimes the abuser will threaten harm to him- or herself. All of this behavior is, at its core, an attempt to assert power and control over a person or process the abuser feels he or she no longer has control over. Domestic violence and abuse can traumatize the victim, interfering with his or her daily life and any work-related and/or parental duties he or she might have. It can also negatively affect children and is even thought to cause health problems in pets.
Emergency Orders of Protection
Recognizing the harmful affects of domestic violence and abuse, Illinois law permits victims to apply to the court and obtain an emergency order of protection. These orders of protection are legally-enforceable court orders that limit the contact the abuser can have with the victim (usually no contact, directly or indirectly, is permitted), with any children the abuser and victim may have together, and direct that the abuser move out of any shared residence the couple may have. Emergency orders of protection can be obtained without the abuser being afforded an opportunity to be heard by the court. However, as their name implies, they only last for a limited time: typically 14-21 days, or until such time as a hearing can be held and the abuser afforded an opportunity to present his or her concerns.
If your emergency order of protection is about to expire but you still have need for an order of protection, you do have options available to you.
Interim Orders of Protection and Plenary Orders of Protection
An interim order of protection is available where your emergency order of protection is about to expire but you have not yet had a court hearing to request a plenary order of protection. An interim order of protection essentially continues the emergency order of protection until a court hearing can be held. Although the abuser does not need to be present when you request an interim order of protection, either the abuser or his or her attorney must have received notice of the date of the court hearing. An interim order of protection will only last for about 30 days.
A court hearing will be held, at which the abuser is permitted to present evidence and rebut your accusations of abuse. If the court finds there is a need for an order of protection, the court may enter a plenary order of protection that can last up to two years. After two years, the plenary order may be renewed for an additional two years if there continues to be a need for the order (there is no limit to the number of times a plenary order of protection can be renewed).
Why Do I Need a DuPage County Family Law Attorney?
Although the Illinois orders of protection laws are designed to protect victims, obtaining an interim or plenary order of protection is not always easy – especially if your abuser is represented by counsel. Seek help from the skilled DuPage County family law attorneys of Abear Law Office. Contact us today and let us help you obtain the protection you need.