Some things are ‘forever’, but in New Jersey, a Final Restraining Order (FRO) does not have to be forever if there are significant reasons why the FRO is no longer needed. A domestic violence restraining order is issued by the Court to prevent future acts of domestic violence. The most significant issue a trial court has to resolve when issuing an Order is whether that level of protection is actually needed to prevent future acts by the defendant. Because this type of Order is civil (rather than criminal) in nature, an application can be made to the Court to establish that the Order is no longer needed. The protected party must be notified of the application to dissolve the FRO, and they have a right to be heard by the Judge as to whether the application to dissolve should be denied. To support this type of application, you will need to obtain the transcript of the proceeding when the Court issued the restraining order. In addition, there are a number of other factors that a reviewing Judge will want you to address. It is the burden of the party seeking to dismiss the protections to establish why the Order should be granted. It is not sufficient to simply say that ‘X’ amount of time has passed; or, that there have been no violations by the defendant. So, does a final restraining order go on forever? No. It doe snot have to. To have a chance to prevail, the applicant/defendant must show the Court that the Restraining Order is not needed, not just that it is ‘burdensome’ on the defendant. Similarly, it is not sufficient for the protected party to simply object to the dismissal. The plaintiff must be able to articulate a reason why the petition to dismiss should be denied.
If you have questions on a situation you are in regarding a restraining order, please phone my office for a free consult on what options exist for you. I can be reached on this secure form, or through my office phone 24/7 at 973-982-1200
SPECIALIZING IN CRIMINAL DEFENSE THROUGHOUT NEW JERSEY
Howard W. Bailey, Esq.
550 Broad Street, Suite 601
Newark, NJ 07102