What Should You Do If Someone Breaks A Protective Order?

If you have a protective order against someone, that order should give you some peace of mind knowing that the person is forbidden from coming near you or your home. However, people with protective orders against them are not known to be the most responsible individuals, so it is not unheard of for them to violate these orders. Here is what you should do if your order is violated.

Call the police.

Violating a protective order is a crime. Even if the perpetrator is now gone, you need to call the police and notify them that the order was violated. Some people may avoid notifying the police because they fear this will cause the perpetrator to become more hostile or violent. Don't let this deter you, but do share your concerns with the police. If needed, they can assign an officer to watch your residence until the perpetrator is arrested or otherwise detained. Notifying the police that the order was violated will ensure this violation is noted in court, which may further any pending charges against the perpetrator or help serve as further evidence against them.

Notify your lawyer.

If you have a lawyer like Roseline D. Feral Attorney at Law representing you in your case against the perpetrator, then you need to notify them of the violation. This is especially important if you have a civil protective order — one that was issued by a judge as a part of a civil case rather than being related to a crime. This violation may prompt your lawyer to petition the court for a protective order with stronger wording. Your lawyer can also use the violation to argue your side in any ongoing civil proceedings, such as a divorce or child custody case. As annoying and scary as it can be to have someone violate a protective order, the fact that they did may actually make winning your case easier.

Confide in a friend.

Finally, you need to tell a friend or family member whom you trust about the violation. Getting your worries off your chest will help you feel better, and having that friend or family member around will make you feel safer. If you are in therapy, this is definitely something worth mentioning to your therapist. They can help you work through the feelings the event has brought up so that they don't continue to negatively impact you as you move forward in your life and court case.