Protection Orders Lawyers in Toronto Helping Keep You Safe
Fights and disagreements are normal within relationships, but what happens when things go too far and you start to fear for your safety? It can be very difficult to leave an abusive relationship, and you may worry that attempting to end the relationship could result in the other person’s behavior worsening. However, it’s important to protect yourself and your children. Find out what you need to know about seeking a restraining order in Ontario and how Anthony Family Law can help.
Don’t wait to file a protection order thinking that things will calm down or get better. Our lawyers can help you start the process and take steps to ensure your safety.
What is a Protection Order?
A protection order, sometimes also referred to as a restraining order, is a legal document that says that someone has to stay away from you and is not legally allowed to contact you. These orders go through the family court system and are commonly used in cases of intimate partner violence. A restraining order only applies to a spouse, a partner you lived with, or someone you have a child with, but there is an option called a peace bond for those who are looking for a protection order against someone they have never lived with and don’t have a child in common with.
What is Required to Obtain a Protection Order?
To obtain a protection order, you first have to show that the person you are getting the order against is a spouse, cohabitation partner, or the parent of your child. You will need to provide evidence to the courts that support your need for a protection order. This could be your own account of being threatened or experiencing violence in the relationship, as well as proof of threatening messages or harassment through stalking or repeated phone calls. In general, you will need to show enough cause that there is reason to fear for your safety for the protection order to be granted.
How Long is a Protection Order Valid For?
The initial protection order is a temporary order until the courts can hear the case and make a determination. This means that the initial protection order is only valid until the date of that first hearing. At that time, the courts will determine if the order should be dropped for not having enough evidence or continued. It is possible to get the courts to issue a permanent order of protection. If this happens, the order is valid indefinitely until there is another change by the courts.
What Happens if Someone Violates a Protection Order?
Once you have a protection order in place, it’s important that you don’t try to contact that person. It’s normal to have feelings for a previous partner still or wish things were different, but violating the protection order can make it much more difficult to have it renewed or turned into a permanent one if you need it later on.
If the other party violates the protection order by contacting you, showing up outside of your house or job, or otherwise harassing you, it’s important to call the police each and every time. This ensures that someone is on their way to make sure you are safe, but it also helps you document a pattern of behavior in which the other person shows they are unwilling to abide by the protection order.
If there are repeated violations, the offender can be charged criminally. If found guilty, they could have to pay fines or face jail time. Violations of a temporary restraining order are often used to show why a permanent protection order should be put in place.
Do I Need an lawyer to Get a Protection Order?
You can file for a protection order on your own, but it’s often helpful to go through the process with a family law lawyer. A lawyer is aware of what needs to be presented to get the courts to grant a protection order, and they can also help you work out other issues, such as how you will continue to facilitate visitation with the other party if you have children together – often done through a third party. An lawyer who has experience handling cases involving protection orders may also be able to refer you to other services and organizations that can help you stay safe and get back on your feet after the relationship ends.
If you are concerned for your safety or the safety of your children, it’s important that you get the process of a protection order started as soon as possible. Contact Anthony Family Law by calling 647-933-2397 to schedule your appointment and find out what you need to know about a protection order for your situation.