How can I get restraining orders to protect me?
can I get a permanent injunction?
Who gets to stay in the home?
Family violence is now a very serious
topic. Courts, law enforcement agencies, and other state agencies
are now very aggressive in trying to prevent family violence.
In the distant past, family violence was many times swept
under the rug or considered an issue that was "taboo"
or that should not be addressed publicly for fear of embarrassment
of the family, or simply because, historically, claims by
women were not taken seriously.
Of course, turning a blind eye to family
violence is inexcusable and the system is now doing what it
should do to try and protect both women and men from family
violence at home. Certainly, protecting children is of paramount
importance as well.
That said, there are numerous statutory
options under Louisiana law at present that afford parties
with the ability to obtain protection that is not only effective
in terms of the orders the Court renders, but also by providing
the State of Louisiana and national databases with information
regarding persons who have a history of family violence such
that those individuals can be tracked and dealt with in order
to protect victims from any further violence.
All that said, however, it is very important
to realize that no Court restraining order, no piece of paper,
no document or other piece of literature can stop a person
from who is dead set on committing an act of violence from
doing so. Unfortunately, if an individual is determined to
cause another person harm, then the aggressor may only be
made to pay for his or her crime after the fact, and there
is virtually nothing that could have been done to prevent
the act from occurring in some circumstances. The key is not
to wait until things escalate out of control. Get help early
and do not stay in an abusive relationship.
can I get restraining orders to protect me?
If you feel that you are in threat of
danger, or if you have already suffered abuse, you need to
contact an attorney immediately so the attorney can file pleadings
as necessary to obtain protection under the Family Violence
Act and other Louisiana laws that afford immediate restraining
orders to protect spouses and children from further harm.
Such restraining orders will prohibit
the offending party from coming within certain distances of
the protected parties and any violation of that will result
in the possible arrest and prosecution of the offending party.
At a minimum, law enforcement officials will enforce the order.
How can I get a permanent
Restraining orders only last for a brief
period of time. In order to obtain long term relief, a restraining
order must be turned into what is called a permanent injunction.
The restraining order is generally ordered by the Court to
protect the party until a hearing can be had to determine
whether or not the party that asked for the restraining order
has a right to the relief they requested, and whether or not
a permanent injunction should issue to create a new Court
order that will last indefinitely in order to continue to
provide the party with protection.
As you might imagine, there are people
who abuse the system and file restraining orders when no harm
has been done, merely to harass another party. In that instance,
the Court would not grant a permanent injunction and would
terminate the restraining order, and potentially sanction
and fine the person for filing the restraining order if they
did so without legal basis or evidence, etc.
That said, it is important to handle
these issues before they become too volatile. In other words,
many, many people are victims of spousal abuse in the form
of an ongoing situation that they have simply refused to face,
or that they do not want to admit. It is common knowledge
amongst the Courts and the legal system that many people return
to abusive situations simply because they feel that it is
less fearful to be in an unsuitable situation where they know
what will happen, instead of facing the fear of the unknown
by leaving the spouse or the abusive situation.
Nothing good can come from remaining
in an abusive situation and if you are the victim of abuse
or threats of abuse, then you should seek protection and exercise
your rights under the law immediately by contacting an attorney.
Who gets to stay in the home?
Courts are reluctant to throw persons
out of the home, especially when it is community property.
Thus, if one of the parties has already left the home, the
Courts feel much more comfortable in issuing a restraining
order that prohibits the abusive spouse from returning to
the home. If, however, the abusive spouse refuses to leave
the home, the party being abused often lands in a position
where they have to leave the home, obtain a restraining order
and request in their pleadings that the Court force the abuser
out of the home and allow the spouse who has suffered abuse
to return to the home after a hearing.
Of course, if the parties are not married
or if the home is the separate property of one of the married
parties, then the person who owns the home will usually be
the one that gets exclusive use of it after a hearing.
All of these issues can be raised at
the time the restraining order is heard and the issue of the
permanent injunction is decided. It is a terrible mistake,
though, to worry about property instead of personal safety.
The main issue should be personal protection and getting out
of the abusive situation. With the help of an attorney you
can do what is needed and make the transition out of the abusive