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In North Carolina, legal protection is available to victims of domestic violence from the courts in the form of a Domestic Violence Protective Order. This legal document is also referred to as a restraining order or a 50B protective order, relating to North Carolina’s Domestic Violence Statute. These court orders are intended to end abuse suffered from threat, harassment, stalking and other forms of violence and intimidation.
The term domestic violence refers to victimization within the family unit and personal relationships, whether defined by marriage, divorce, cohabitation, or dating. The issuance of an order of protection by a North Carolina court requires a victim’s allegations of physical harm, attempted physical harm, or conduct creating fear of imminent physical harm. Most protective orders limit the proximity to which an abuser has to a victim’s person, home, and place of employment. In the instance of domestic violence which occurs within a family structure, these protective orders can extend to children and their schools.
In cases of emergency, a Judge may grant a victim of domestic violence an order of protection outside the presence or notice to the alleged abuser. Ex-parte orders like these are valid until both parties can be heard in court, and require an additional court appearance for the victim and abuser within a finite period of time.
At that hearing, North Carolina Court’s can grant a Domestic Violence Protective Order for up to one year, and can be renewed if necessary. Domestic Violence Protective Orders involving parents can include rulings for temporary custody of children and property.
Allegations of domestic violence are taken seriously and handled expeditiously by courts in North Carolina. Whether the result of ongoing and urgent danger, a single out-of-control incident, or, sadly, a fabrication, domestic violence allegations are matters of considerable gravity for all parties involved, including judges and attorneys. The ramifications of allegations of domestic violence can have long lasting impact, for both victims and abusers. As such, this is many times a delicate issue requiring proper handling and legal guidance to ensure protection of your interests.
If you are a victim of domestic violence or are facing accusations, you need a dedicated and experienced family lawyer to help you understand your options and lasting implications. Domestic violence is a serious issue that needs to be handled properly to avoid further repercussions. We work closely with men and women in Western North Carolina to resolve domestic violence issues.