You have rights under Georgia law to protect yourself from acts of violence or abusive behavior. If you are a survivor of domestic violence, you might be able to obtain a protective order directing a spouse or other family member to stay away from you (sometimes people informally refer to these as temporary restraining orders). A protective order involving a family member, romantic partner, or roommate can remain in effect for several years or even be permanent.

You should consider contacting a Roswell family violence lawyer for information on how to file for and obtain legal protection from abuse. Family violence is a serious issue, and local family courts can issue temporary protective orders under emergency circumstances. One of our skilled family law attorneys can help you convince a judge that you need immediate protection.

Family Violence Defined

Battery, simple battery, assault, simple assault, criminal trespass, criminal damage to property, or any felony charge can form the basis of a Roswell family violence case. State law defines family violence as abuse or the threat of abuse between family members or individuals of the same household. Specifically, family violence is categorized as abuse between the following parties:

  • Married or divorced couples;
  • Parents of the same child;
  • Parents and children;
  • Step-parents and step-children;
  • Foster parents and foster children; and
  • People who live or have lived in the same household.

The state definition of family violence specifically excludes instances of child discipline. A parent may, for example, exercise “reasonable discipline” in the form of restraint, detention, or corporal punishment without having to face any legal consequences.

Requirements for Family Violence Protective Orders

A family violence protective order can be issued to protect a survivor from future instances of domestic abuse. Although it generally remains in effect for one year, a family violence protective order can be extended at a judge’s discretion.

Seeking a protection order with the help of a lawyer is a powerful option available to family violence survivors in Roswell. While the parties don’t need to be related by blood or marriage, the petitioner and respondent in a family violence protective order case must reside in the same household.

Anyone seeking a family violence protective order in Roswell must show that there is a need for protection against future harm. A petitioner must prove that they are in fear for their physical safety or the physical safety of their children; this is usually proven by showing the respondent previously engaged in violent behavior against them or their children. Violent behavior can include simple battery, aggravated assault, damage to property, and emotional harm.

Family law judges have the discretion to prohibit various forms of conduct between the alleged abuser and the petitioner. For example, a judge may prohibit all forms of contact between the parties, order the abuser to leave the home, suspend the abuser’s child visitation rights, order mandatory counseling, and even issue an arrest warrant if the abuser violates the protection order in any way.

Discuss Your Legal Options with a Roswell Family Violence Attorney

Enduring repeated instances of family violence is a terrible experience to have to go through. Fortunately, you have legal options at your disposal, including filing for a protection order. A compassionate Roswell family violence lawyer from our team can guide you through this process and support you during this difficult time. Contact our intake team today to get the process started.

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