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Posted on December 28, 2015 in Crime

Arizona Restraining Order Violation: The Aftermath and Long-Term Effects

In Arizona, restraining orders are also referred to as orders of protection or injunctions. A restraining order is a court order placed against an individual, prohibiting the person named from certain acts, such as making contact with the party, coming near that person’s home, work or school. These court orders are typically used in domestic violence, harassment, stalking, or sexual assault cases. Although it is not a crime to have a restraining order against you, violating an Arizona restraining order could cost you. They are issued by a judge and are effective for one year from the service date.

Types of Restraining Order Provisions

According to Phoenix domestic violence lawyers, several provisions can be included in an Arizona restraining order, such as the following:

  • no contact: no contact by phone, mail, fax, notes, or gifts in addition to online contact, such as Facebook or Twitter
  • Cease abuse: you will be required to stop threatening or harassing the person who filed the order against you
  • Support : you may be required to make payments such as mortgages or child support
  • Restitution: you may be required to pay for damages to the person who filed an order against you
  • Exclusive use: if a married couple owns property, such as a home or car, the court may order that only one partner be allowed to use the property

Violating an Arizona Restraining Order

A restraining order is a civil misdemeanor, meaning it is not a crime to have a restraining order issued against you. The potential for criminal penalties comes only if you violate the terms listed on your restraining order.

Violating an Arizona restraining order can result in being found guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and fines totaling to nearly $2,500.

The long-term impact of being subject to a restraining order in Arizona is that you are a party to a lawsuit that is public record (unless those records are sealed).

How Does a Restraining Order Impact Your Life?

Some employers may ask that you identify all lawsuits you have been involved with, but others do not. If you are asked whether you have been involved in a lawsuit, have had a claim brought against you, or are subject to a restraining order, you will have to answer yes.

In most cases, a restraining order should not affect your ability to do your job, unless you carry a gun for work purposes, or the person who took the restraining order out against you also works with you.

The restraining order does affect your ability to possess or own a firearm. This order will affect your ability to seek employment where it is necessary for you to possess a firearm. This term is usually for 10 years or as stated on your order.

In some cases, the court may require you to turn over any firearms that you own in the interest of protecting the other party; this decision is made on a case-by-case basis. You will get the firearms back upon the expiration of the restraining order period or if you petition the court for early return of your firearms from local law enforcement.

The order will not affect your ability to rent an apartment or house unless that apartment or house is within 100 yards of the person you are ordered to cease contact with. It will not affect your credit rating or report.

What Happens After a Restraining Order?

Once the terms of your order are met, you can apply to have the conviction “set aside.” When a conviction is expunged or set aside in Arizona, a records check will show the original charge and conviction; however, it will also show that the judgment was vacated and an order of dismissal was entered.

Craig Orent has seen the devastating consequences of violating an Arizona restraining order. He and the rest of the criminal defense lawyers at Orent Law Offices are committed to fighting for those who face criminal charges, especially when restraining orders are involved. Call today for a free consultation at (480) 656-7301.