How To Obtain A Domestic Violence Protective Order

How to Obtain a Domestic Violence Protective Order (DVPO) A Domestic Violence Protective Order (DVPO), also referred to as a Restraining Order, is a civil court order signed by a judge that can provide a layer of protection to domestic violence victims in specific circumstances. DVPOs can be effective for up to one year. If needed, you can also renew a DVPO several times for “good cause.” When seeking a DVPO, a victim can request the court to

How to Obtain a Domestic Violence Protective Order (DVPO)

A Domestic Violence Protective Order (DVPO), also referred to as a Restraining Order, is a civil court order signed by a judge that can provide a layer of protection to domestic violence victims in specific circumstances. DVPOs can be effective for up to one year. If needed, you can also renew a DVPO several times for "good cause."

When seeking a DVPO, a victim can request the court to:

  • order the abuser to stop threatening, abusing, stalking, or harassing the victim;
  • grant victim possession of the home and exclude the abuser;
  • order the abuser's eviction from the home and help the victim to return home;
  • provide temporary custody of minor children and establish visitation rights;
  • order spousal and/or child support;
  • prohibit the abuser from buying a firearm;
  • order the abuser to complete an abuser treatment program; and
  • provide for any additional orders or prohibitions necessary to protect the victim.

Who may Seek a DVPO?

In North Carolina, you can file for a DVPO for acts of domestic violence done to you or your minor child by someone you have or have had a "personal relationship" with, including:

  • your spouse or ex-spouse,
  • a person of the opposite sex with whom you live or formerly lived,
  • someone you are related to over the age of 16,
  • someone with whom you have a child in common, or
  • a current or former member of the household, or someone of the opposite sex whom you are dating or have dated.

What is the State Definition of "Domestic Violence"?

In North Carolina, "domestic violence" is when someone with whom you have or had a "personal relationship" with does any of the following to you or your minor child:

  • attempts to cause bodily injury;
  • intentionally causes bodily injury;
  • puts you or a member of your family or household in fear of imminent serious bodily injury;
  • continuously harasses you, inflicting substantial emotional distress or
  • commits any rape or sexual offense listed in sections 14-27.2 through 14-27.7.

Once you feel that you are in a safe place and would like to speak with an experienced attorney about pursuing a DVPO, please contact our Concord, NC office today.

This article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered or substituted as legal advice.