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I Have a Restraining Order Against Me. How Will it Impact the Holidays?

December 15, 2020

Separation of the family unit can be a devastating event psychologically, emotionally, and financially. This is even more pronounced during the holidays, especially if you have a restraining order filed against you. Let’s take a look at how you can negotiate the intricacies of visitation rights during a holiday even if a restraining order has been placed on you by the court. 

How a Restraining Order Affects Visitation Rights During the Holiday 

Child custody and visitation rights are an especially tricky aspect of divorce proceedings. Most courts mediate their decisions taking into account what is best for the child, not the parent. However, this often leaves one to both parents dissatisfied. 

You aren’t legally required to have an attorney during custody and visitation right hearings, but it is in your best interest to have one who will help guide you through the process and protect your interests. There are a few ways to negotiate visitation during the holidays. 

First of all, a restraining order does not necessarily change a visitation schedule if it was filed after visitation rights have been determined. You may simply negotiate ways of preventing contact between the two parties such as through third-party transportation or third-party supervised visits between the child and the party against whom the restraining order was filed. 

Also, you can file a “motion to modify” the restraining order, which allows you to renegotiate certain terms of the restraining order. For example, the “No Contact” parts of the restraining order can be modified to exclude the child. 

No matter which method you choose, it is important to have the terms of the restraining order during the holidays carefully negotiated and documented before the relevant authorities. The punishment for violating a restraining order can be significant fines and/or jail time. 

How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help You Fight a Restraining Order 

Restraining orders are serious issues and it’s important to seek legal counsel. Here are some ways a criminal defense lawyer can help you battle a restraining order: 

  • Obey the temporary restraining order. Usually, a temporary restraining order is served before the permanent one. It is important to respect this order and avoid any form of contact with the other party. 
  • Gather all evidence about the case. This includes things such as photographs, clothing, videos, objects, documents, phones and GPS records, and so on. Do not destroy any form of evidence
  • Make a list of possible witnesses. List all the possible witnesses who may have information about the incident or accusations and obtain their contact information. 

With the right information, there are several possible defenses you and your attorney can build against a permanent restraining order, such as: 

  • Countering the predicate act. Proving to the court that no act of harassment, both physical and otherwise occurred. 
  • Forcing the petitioner to prove the necessity of the permanent restraining order. 
  • Arguing for domestic contretemps, which implies that the petitioner is exaggerating routine domestic squabbles. 
  • Implying to the court that the petitioner is using the restraining order to obtain undue advantage during divorce/litigation planning. 

Contact an Experienced New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer About Your Restraining Order in Jersey City

Do you have a restraining order filed against you in the state of New Jersey? A restraining order can result in a tarnished reputation and result in a loss of child custody and visitation rights. That is why you need to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your case. The attorneys at  Law Offices of Anthony J. Vecchio, LLC have successfully represented clients in Freehold, Woodbridge, Jackson, Old Bridge and throughout New Jersey. Call 732-217-4860  or fill out the online contact form to schedule a consultation with a member of our legal team. We have an office conveniently located at 227 Main Street Woodbridge, NJ 07095 as well as offices located in Jersey City, Freehold, Princeton and Mt. Laurel. 

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

Disorderly conduct consists of any improper behavior such as fighting, threats of violence, or creating a dangerous atmosphere. 

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