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How to Fight Back Against an Unfair Order of Protection

An order of protection is a tool commonly used when an individual wants to keep him or herself and/or children away from a potentially dangerous or abusive partner and/or parent. These orders are justified in cases in which a partner and/or parent is actually abusive or dangerous.

However, there are circumstances in which an order of protection could simply be used to make a former spouse or partner look bad in the eyes of the court. This can have huge implications when it comes to matters of divorce, child custody and child support.

If you have been hit with an unfair order of protection, there are some strategies you can use to protect your rights and best interests. Here are a few tips:

  • Get copies of the documents: You need to know exactly what you are being accused of if you are to effectively argue your case. You can get these documents at the courthouse and then begin forming your defense.
  • Work with an attorney: An attorney with experience handling these types of issues will understand all the timelines and strategies for contesting orders of protection and will largely handle the issue for you.
  • Never violate the terms of the order: Even if you believe the order is entirely unfair and unwarranted, you should never violate it, as it’s still a legally binding court order. Violation of the order could result in prison time and criminal charges, and it could also signal to the judge that the order was indeed warranted.
  • Build evidence: Carefully consider what your spouse is accusing you of doing and build as much evidence as you can to show that what you are accused of did not happen or could not have happened.
  • Remain professional: Whenever you appear in court, dress nicely, be respectful and calm and never speak out of turn. It’s important to make a good impression, especially if you’ve been accused of being violent or abusive.
  • Explain your side: Your attorney can help you prepare to testify on your own behalf and give your side of the story.

For further guidance on how to defend your rights when an order of protection has been placed on you, consult a knowledgeable Minnesota divorce and family law attorney with Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.

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