Protection Order/Violation of a Protection Order

Violation of a Protection Order in Durango

Protection orders are often called restraining orders, and they are taken out against both men and women. Sometimes they are sought legitimately, but other times false accusations are involved. They are often sought in domestic violence cases. If you are accused of violating a protection order in Colorado, there can be serious repercussions. Someone in this position should retain an experienced criminal defense attorney at Greenberg, McGuinness & Alt, a law firm with extensive experience serving clients in La Plata County, Archuleta County, Montezuma County, and the Southern Ute Tribal Court jurisdiction. As both criminal and family law attorneys, we are uniquely positioned to help our clients with these matters.

Fighting Accusations of Violence in Colorado

Protection orders affect the freedom of the person against whom they apply. If one is brought against you, you may want to know how a protection order is obtained. Protection orders can be sought in a county court action or in municipal court by filing a civil complaint for a protection order. A complaint form is filled out and filed with the court's clerk. The clerk sends the form to a judge or magistrate, and the person seeking the order usually sees a judge on the day of filing to tell him or her why the order is appropriate. A temporary restraining order is issued if the judge finds merit in the argument.

The specific grounds for obtaining a protection order are cited under C.R.S. 13-14-102. Good cause for a protection order includes prevention of assaults or other physical harm, prevention of domestic abuse or emotional abuse of the elderly or vulnerable, and prevention of stalking. If a person seeking the order is found in imminent danger of suffering any of these harms, the court will grant a temporary order.

Typically, the person seeking the order must return in a couple of weeks for an evidentiary hearing, which the person against whom the order is sought should also attend. The purpose of the return hearing is to decide whether the order should be permanent. For those against whom a protection order is sought, there may be a lot at stake. Sometimes a protection order applies not only to a spouse but someone's children. These orders typically stay in place without modification for four years.

Courts are usually sensitive to allegations of domestic violence and the way these can affect any children a couple might have. They may list children as “protected persons” under an order if the children were direct abuse victims or otherwise actually subject to violence. Both sides are likely to need lawyers during the return hearing.

What if you violate a protection order? The person who got the order may contact the police, and the police are likely to respond if you are attempting physical contact with that person. A violation of a protection order may result in a civil contempt of court action, or it may result in an 18-month jail sentence. The protected person may decide whether to use the civil or criminal court system or both.

Consult a Protection Order Lawyer in Durango

Violating a protection order against you in Colorado can result in adverse consequences. An experienced Durango protection order attorney at Greenberg, McGuinness & Alt can explore the facts of your case before building a vigorous defense tailored to your situation. We represent clients in Durango, Pagosa Springs, Cortez, and Ignacio. Call us to set up an appointment at (970) 259-4422, or fill out our online form today.