The People’s Lawyer

What to avoid when served with a family protective order

On Behalf of | Apr 8, 2023 | Family Protection Order - Defense

When things go awry in your relationship and you’re served with a protective order, it can be frustrating, especially if it’s preventing you from seeing your children. In West Virginia, someone can seek a restraining order to protect themselves or minor children from abuse — and there tends to be an uptick in these kinds of allegations when a marital relationship sours.

Regardless of the legitimacy or grounds of your protective order, here are three things to avoid until you’re able to get the issue resolved:

1. Contacting the other party

Undoubtedly, you may want to contact your partner or spouse when you learn of the protective order. You may want to know why they made this move or convince them to drop it. However, contacting them in any way (even through a third party) is a violation of your order and will subject you to additional legal trouble.

If possible, delete the other party’s contact from your phone until the order is removed. There have been cases of accidental calling, which led to charges. Deleting their contact will also save you from the temptation of intentionally calling.

2. Not getting some emotional support

It’s better not to discuss your situation with anybody, but you can do so freely in a therapist’s office. No matter how you ended up in this situation, your emotions may be running high. Having someone help you work through them can allow you to avoid some impulsive mistakes.

3. Going to places you can run into the other person

The chances are you and your spouse or partner frequented particular places. While it can be tempting to go to such places and carry on as if everything’s normal (maybe even hoping to see them), that’s not a good idea. The protective order limits how near you can be to them, and you would need to leave if they’re there.

If you are served with a family protective order, you should understand as much as possible about your rights to make informed decisions about your future.