Properly handling an order of protection

An old adage points out that a thin line exists between love and hate. This refers specifically to the notion that in a romantic relationship (between you and your spouse or partner), one often sees emotions swing from one extreme to the other. While you (like many people in Missouri) likely pride yourself on your ability to remain composed, discord with your spouse or partner can often prompt you to do or say something you may subsequently come to regret.

However, your spouse or partner seeking an order of protection against you still likely comes as a surprise. Many in your same situation come to us here at Wampler & Passanise facing such an order. Like them, you may not fully understand the implications it poses (and how to best respond to it).

Restrictions imposed by an order of protection

Your first impulse upon learning there is an order of protection against you may be to contact your spouse or partner. Yet doing so may leave you facing further criminal scrutiny. Per Mid-Missouri Legal Services, while an order of protection prevents you from harming, threatening or detaining your spouse or partner, harassing, stalking or forcing them into any action also qualify as violations, giving law enforcement officials cause to act against you. Those actions specifically are often open to interpretation, meaning your spouse or partner may cite any contact on your part as a violation of the order.

What to do when subject to a protective order

Rather, your best course of action when subject to a protective order may be to wait to speak to your spouse or partner at a court-appointed hearing. Such a forum allows you to present your side of the situation to them (and to authorities) without the threat of facing criminal penalties. You can find more information on handling accusations of domestic violence throughout our site.