Domestic Violence Lawyers for Restraining Orders in Randolph, New Jersey
Randolph Township in Morris County, is no exception when it comes to domestic violence incidents, allegations, and resulting restraining orders.
Domestic violence, whether intimate partner, family member, child, or elder abuse, affects 10 million people in the U.S. annually regardless of race, class, age, gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Victims commonly suffer physical, psychological and emotional injury, including Post Traumatic Syndrome, depression, substance abuse, and suicidal tendencies. As a result, domestic violence is a national health concern with costly consequences of more than 12 billion dollars a year, as it absorbs resources in the healthcare, legal and social arenas from generation to generation. This is because 25% of women and 10% of men in the U.S. become domestic violence victims at some point in their lives. And New Jersey has higher numbers than the national average. Specifically, in New Jersey, 26.2% of women and 29.3% of men over their lifetimes suffer some form of domestic violence, whether it be intimate partner assault, sexual assault, or stalking. On any given day, domestic violence hotlines are flooded with calls.
If you are the victim in a case like this in Randolph, your health and that of your family’s is at risk when domestic violence goes unchecked. Likewise, a final restraining order can permanently impact your life in ways ranging from where you live, to your ability to become a citizen and own or possess firearms and other weapons. Ask an experienced Randolph NJ restraining order attorney at our local firm what you can do to protect yourself on either side of a restraining order case. We have extensive experience handling hearings and domestic violence charges in Morris County and we are here to provide the zealous advocacy you need now. Please feel free to call (908) 336-5008 or contact us online to discuss your case with a lawyer free of charge.
What Constitutes Domestic Violence in Randolph, New Jersey?
Domestic violence cases in Randolph are governed by the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act (“Act”). This Act is New Jersey’s legislative response to the growing health and safety costs of domestic violence, since evidence suggests that 15% of all violent crime is intimate partner domestic violence. It permits adult (over 18) victims of stalking, harassment, assault, criminal trespass, and numerous other listed crimes to seek protection by filing criminal and civil complaints against an intimate relation or partner, specified as a spouse, lover, former spouse, partner, household member, or other parent of the victim’s child. Notably, New Jersey law also allows an elderly or disabled person to seek protection against caretakers who fail or refuse to take care of them though obligated to do so.
What if I’m a Victim of Domestic Violence in Randolph NJ?
If you are a Randolph Township victim of domestic violence, know that the authorities can help you initiate the legal process to protect you and your family from further acts of abuse or intimidation. If you are in the midst of experiencing violence from a spouse, partner, or other intimate relation, calling the Randolph Township Police to come to the scene may help protect you and your family from injury. While there, the police can report the incident, and if evidence of an injury is found, arrest the person, and take any weapons in the immediate area. The police can also help you file a complaint and restraining order against your abuser, whether you call them or go to the police headquarters to file a temporary restraining order (TRO). You may also request a protective order at Randolph Municipal Court. Additionally, a victim may file a civil domestic violence complaint in the Morris County Superior Court, Family Division, seeking protection from further endangerment from their abuser.
If a victim needs an emergency TRO, they may file the paperwork with the court clerk and speak to a judge during regular courthouse hours or at the local police station after hours. The paperwork and oral testimony, sworn under oath, include the identifying statistical information of the plaintiff and defendant, household members, employment, weapons, substance abuse, and the details of domestic violence, such as the threats, harassment, or physical abuse, and any history of violence.
Randolph Restraining Orders
A temporary restraining order or TRO protects a domestic violence victim and their household from a named perpetrator. A Randolph victim can file TRO paperwork, naming the abuser as the defendant and the victim as the plaintiff, and requesting various provisions. The order prohibits the defendant from contacting the plaintiff and other household members, such as children, roommates, or other relatives, in person or by other means, at home, work, school or other locations. The TRO may include visitation, support, counseling, and property orders as well as surrender of weapons. The defendant will be ordered to turn over firearms to law enforcement when served with TRO; officers may also conduct a search for any weapons when responding to a domestic violence call.
A judge grants a protective order if they find it is necessary to protect the health and safety of those named in the order. A signed order must be served on the defendant to inform them of its existence and associated requirements. The TRO lasts generally 10 days, but always until the final restraining order (FRO) hearing, where both parties and their witnesses present to the judge their sides of the story, with any supporting evidence. If the judge is convinced, the TRO becomes a permanent order (FRO), which remains in effect unless someone goes to court to get it terminated. The order includes a determination that the parties are in a qualifying relationship under the Act, that domestic violence occurred, and the order is necessary to prevent further violence. After the FRO is signed, the defendant must get fingerprinted and photographed and permanently forfeit any weapons.
What if a Person Violates a Restraining Order in Randolph?
If an individual violates an existing temporary or final restraining order in Randolph or elsewhere in New Jersey, they may be charged with contempt. Violation of a restraining order by committing one of the crimes listed in the Act is a fourth degree crime, potentially landing the defendant in prison for up to 18 months with a possible $10,000.00 fine. So, stalking a protected person is a violation of a restraining order and thus, a fourth degree crime. However, calling a protected person may also be a protective order violation, as can other acts that don’t comply with the order but do not constitute crimes in and of themselves. In that case, the violation is a disorderly persons offense carrying a six-month jail sentence and a fine of up to $1,000.00. Moreover, a second violation may lead to a mandatory minimum of 30 days in jail.
Randolph Township Criminal Charges for Domestic Violence
If criminal charges are filed by police or the alleged victim, the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office can request that the defendant be held in jail until the case concludes, for the protection of the victim. Morris County prosecutors handle the domestic violence criminal complaint when the defendant is charged with an indictable crime such as aggravated assault, terroristic threats, or criminal restraint. The Randolph Municipal Court prosecutes cases for domestic violence disorderly persons offenses, such as criminal mischief resulting in minor damage, simple assault, and harassment.
Restraining Order Case in Randolph, NJ? Talk to a Lawyer Free Today
You should make sure to be empowered when you have a domestic violence restraining order matter in Randolph or anywhere else in New Jersey for that matter. Our knowledgeable team of domestic violence lawyers can ensure that your questions are answered before going to court or proceeding to a restraining order trial in Morris County. For a free consultation, contact us now at (908) 336-5008.
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