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Maryland Attorney Helps Abuse Victims Get Protective Orders

A restraining order keeps the abuser away from you

At the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee, we help victims of domestic violence obtain protective orders. An order of protection (also known as a restraining order) prohibits your abuser from trying to have any contact or communication with you, and bars the abuser from entering or remaining at your home. In Maryland, you can get a domestic violence protective order (DVPO) if you are:

  • The spouse or ex-spouse of the abuser
  • Someone who has cohabitated with the abuser for at least 90 days
  • A relative of the abuser (either by blood, marriage or adoption)
  • A stepchild or stepparent of the abuser
  • A vulnerable adult
  • A co-parent with the abuser

Types of DVPOs

Three types of DVPOs are available in Maryland, depending on the circumstances of your case:

  • Interim protective order — This type of DVPO is issued immediately when you file. It lasts only until you get a temporary protective order hearing with a judge, which typically occurs within 24 to 48 hours.
  • Temporary protective order — This type of Maryland restraining order is issued if the judge determines at the hearing that you were a victim of abuse. Temporary protective orders are valid until you appear in court to obtain a final protective order, usually within a week.
  • Final protective order — You’ll receive a final protective order if, after you and your family law attorney present your case, the judge finds by clear and convincing evidence that the offender abused you.

Permanent protective orders

A final protective order can remain valid in Maryland for as long as one year under normal circumstances. However, a final DVPO can be extended or made permanent if all of the following conditions exist:

  • You had a DVPO against this abuser in the past
  • The abuser was convicted in criminal court of domestic violence against you and served at least five years in prison
  • You are requesting a new DVPO after the abuser’s imprisonment because the violence or threat of violence persists

If you are granted a permanent restraining order in Maryland, you’ll have to go to court if at any time in the future you want the DVPO lifted.

Talk to a lawyer who can help protect you from abuse

Domestic violence is not taken lightly in Maryland. At the Law Offices of Ellen L. Lee, we know how to attain the appropriate type of restraining order for your case. Call 240-552-6957 today or contact our law firm online to learn more about how we can help. Conveniently located two blocks from the Rockville Courthouse, our law office serves clients in Columbia, Frederick, Annapolis, Bethesda, Montgomery County and the rest of Maryland. We also have a satellite office in Bethesda.

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