What is a Civil Protective Order (CPO)?
A Civil Protective Order (CPO) is an Order issued by a court in Washington, DC restricting one individual from interacting with another individual. A typical CPO restricts contact, communication, harassment, assault, threatening, and stalking. More recently CPO’s have also been used to address online and/or cyber issues. For example, a person may be restricted from posting images or information about the other individual on the Internet or transmitting them through email.
What Requirements are Necessary to Obtain a Protective Order in DC?
Generally speaking, the person from whom you are seeking protection must be, “a family member, roommate, someone with whom you had a dating relationship or a child in common, are or were married to, or if they previously dated your current or former boyfriend or girlfriend. You may also file if you are the victim of stalking, sexual assault, or sexual abuse.”
You must also prove that the other individual threatened to commit a crime against you, or did in fact commit a crime against you. A DC divorce attorney can help you with these steps.
How do I get a Civil Protective Order from the Court?
In order to obtain a CPO you will first need to go to the D.C. Superior Court and file a petition for a CPO. A judge will then review your petition and may grant you a temporary protective order. A hearing date will then be set, usually approximately two weeks from issuance of the temporary protective order, at which time the parties will present evidence to the court regarding the allegations set forth in the petition and the petition will be either granted or denied.
If you have any questions about this process please feel free to call us at 202-276-1167 or contact us online to schedule your consultation. We’d be happy to help you navigate your protective order in DC, the legal jargon and steps that are beneficial for you.