Civil Injunctions for Protection
An injunction is a court order signed by a judge that can be served and or enforced by law enforcement. If an injunction for protection is granted by the court, the judge may order the other party not to have contact with you and not to harm you mentally or physically.
If a person has committed an act of violence towards you or that person has placed you in fear, and made you believe you would be immediately harmed by an unlawful act of violence, you may have grounds to ask the court for an Injunction for Protection. An act of violence includes assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any other criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death to the petitioner by any of the petitioner's family or household members.
Completing a Petition for Injunction
To obtain an injunction, a petition must be filed and submitted to the Clerk of Court in the county where either the Petitioner or Respondent lives or in the county where the act(s) of violence occurred. The Clerk will submit the petition to a Judge for review. There are 5 types of injunctions: Domestic, Repeat, Dating, Sexual Violence, and Stalking.
Injunctions for Protection Against Domestic Violence may be issued against a spouse or former spouse, a person related by blood or marriage, a person which you are presently living with or have formerly lived with, as if a family, or against someone with whom you have a child in common, regardless whether you were ever married to that person or lived with them. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing together or have in the past resided together.
Injunctions for Protection Against Repeat Violence may be issued if someone has committed two separate acts of violence, one being within the last six months, against you. The Injunction for Protection Against Repeat Violence is available for those individuals not covered by the Domestic Violence Injunctions. These are sometimes filed against neighbors, friends, or co-workers.
Injunctions for Protection Against Dating Violence may be issued against an individual with whom you have or had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature, within the last six months, but have not resided with.
Injunctions for Protection Against Sexual Violence may be issued if one incident of a sexually lewd act was committed or attempted. It is a requirement that the sexual violence be reported to a law enforcement agency and that the person filing the petition cooperates in the investigation. A petition may also be filed against a respondent who was sentenced to imprisonment for the sexual violence and who has been or will be released from incarceration.
Injunctions for Protection against Stalking may be issued if someone is purposefully and repeatedly following, harassing or cyber-stalking you over a period of time for no legitimate purpose and causing you substantial emotional distress. If in doing so, he/she threatens your life or threatens to harm you, with the intent to cause you to reasonably fear for your safety, then the act becomes aggravated stalking.