Temporary Protective Orders
Learn about a TPO, (Temporary Protective Order), commonly known as a Restraining Order
Restraining Order For Addressing Domestic Violence Problems
What Is A TPO?
A TPO is (Temporary Protective Order) is a Court Order which places restrictions on how another person can communicate with you, be in your physical presence or otherwise engage you. A TPO is what is commonly known as a restraining order.
A TPO may be granted to protect a single person, children or extended family members. It serves to mitigate potential physical or mental harm caused by harrassment, intimidation, threats, physical abuse, or violence.
How Fast Can I Get a TPO?
In most jurisdictions you can obtain a TPO in as little as 24 hours. After completing the steps to get a TPO, if approved, the other party will be served a copy of the TPO by a deputy of the sheriff's department. The protections afforded by a TPO go into effect immediately upon papers being served on the other party.
What Can a TPO Do for Me?
A temporary protective order generally forbids the alleged abuser from having any direct or indirect contact with the person(s) provided protection under the court order. Common stipulations are requiring the respondent to stay at least 1500 feet from the persons protected, no forms of communications between the parties and other similar requirements to block contact.
How Long Does a TPO Last?
An initial TPO typically lasts for 2-3 weeks. During this time a court hearing will be scheduled for both sides to present their argument to continue or drop the Order. Both parties are required to attend the hearing, with or without a lawyer. If the court decides to extend the protective order it could be extended for a period of weeks to possibly permanently in extreme situations.
How To Get A TPO in Georgia
The process to get a TPO varies slightly among jurisdictions. Generally you need to visit a local Advocate's officeto undergo an initial screening. During the screening you will state your reasons, and show any evidence, for requesting a protective order. The final part of the screening requires you to swear an oath that you have provided accurate and factual information. The application will be forwarded to the Court for review and consideration. If approved, a hearing date will be scheduled for you to stand before a judge, briefly summarize your situation, and answer whatever questions the judge may ask.
If your TPO request is approved you will go to different part of the courthouse where the TPO will be created, stamped and handed to you. The Court will have the TPO served on the other party by a sheriff’s deputy within hours of the order being granted.
If you get a TPO, make certain you keep a copy with you at all times. If law enforcement has to get involved they can do a better job if they know exactly the details of the Order. You should also read it thoroughly to understand exactly what protection it affords for your safety.
IF THE SUBJECT OF THE TPO IS VIOLATING THE ORDER YOU SHOULD IMMEDIATELY CALL 911! Sometimes people will ignore a TPO and present an imminent problem or safety threat. Rather than engaging the person and placing yourself at risk, let law enforcement handle the matter.