Understanding the domestic violence restraining order process - The Men's Legal Center


Understanding the domestic violence restraining order process

Because there is a low barrier to obtaining a Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO) and the rewards, especially on custody issues are so great, parties are encouraged to file for a DVRO.

Sacramento has expanded many issues covered by the DVRO to cover the following issues: Restraining orders against Defendant to protect the Plaintiff, other people, Stay-away and Move-out orders, Guns or other firearms or ammunition surrender, Recording of unlawful communications, Control of animal pets, Child custody and visitation orders, Property control orders regarding use and possession, Debt payment, Property restraint, Spousal support orders, Rights to the mobile device and wireless phone account, Restraint to change life and health insurance policies, Payment of lawyer fees and costs, Payment of cost and services, Order for Defendant to attend a Batterer Intervention program, A catch-all out-of-pocket expenses

Most issues covered in Domestic Violence Restraining Orders (DVROs) are identical to issues covered in Dissolution of Marriage. A Paternity case does not cover the same issues but could cover all but spousal support. Since the process is a summary proceeding with accelerated hearing, Defendant is at a disadvantage.

Also, Plaintiff can obtain primary physical custody of the child(ren) with restricted visitation to Defendant. Often the court orders supervised visitation at the Defendant’s expense. In a Divorce and a Paternity suit, child support is based on each parent’s net income and the timeshare of the non-custodial parent. Further, under California law, the primary custodial parent has the right to move away.

The Plaintiffs can get temporary custody orders out of the gate and those orders now become the status quo. The DVROs temporary child support and spousal support orders would become the status quo.

If kick-out orders are part of the DVRO, the kick-out orders boot the Defendant out the house, but debt payment restraining order may have the Defendant paying the mortgage. Plaintiff can ask for Defendant to pay the normal monthly payments besides the mortgage, such as the car, credit card, or insurance payments etc.

In an accelerated proceeding, most issues that would be decided in a Divorce or Paternity case are decided at least temporarily. The temporary domestic violence orders under the domestic violence case become the benchmark against which the parties argue. If a DVRO is being filed by a married party, the Defendant MUST retain counsel immediately.

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