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Can I get an order of protection based on what my 3 year old said?

Bloomington, IL |

Daughter said dads girlfriend pinched her for crying and there is a bruise on her butt. Is this enough?

Attorney Answers 5


  1. probably not but it depends upon the judge. best if you call dad about it.


  2. An Order of Protection seems out of reach on these facts. That doesn't mean you need to ignore it, however.

    It's not unusual for court-approved agreement to impose a duty on parents to make sure new friends or new spouses obey the court's orders. The GF is not subject to the court's orders . . . yet. It also not unusual for court-approved agreements to limit corporal punishment or at least to say that if there's going to be any kind of physical discipline it will be administered only by one of the parents -- not a friend or step-parent.

    So, you should 1) hire a lawyer, 2) have the lawyer send Dad a letter explaining the situation and proffering an amended agreement limiting physical discipline, 3) whether he agrees or refuses to cooperate, let the lawyer schedule a court date and get the matter back to court, 4) go to mediation and, with the lawyer's help, negotiate the needed amendments.

    Questions? Call -- 312-987-9999 -- no charge, no obligation Matrimonial / Family Law free consultation.


  3. I woud take her to court and let the judge decide. She is too young to be traumatized by the courtroom experience.

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  4. Is the bruise the result of the pinch? In order to get an order for protection, you need to establish a pattern of abuse. A single incident is rarely enough for the court to grant an order of protection unless it is something so serious and so obviously caused by the perpetrator.do you have independent reason to believe that dad's girlfriend is abusive towards your daughter? Was your daughter alone with girlfriend or was dad around? Does your daughter otherwise like the girlfriend and dad?

    I wouldn't call dad about it because if girlfriend abused her, he'll lie about it and punish your daughter for telling. If he was a good guy, you would have already called him to talk about it. Take pictures of the bruise. Keep talking to your daughter.


  5. In general, single incidents will not be enough to have an Order of Protection awarded to you. However, every case is decided on the basis of its own facts and circumstances, so you should either apply for the Order of Protection and talk to the presiding Judge, or speak with an attorney about your questions.

    Content contained on this site is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. You should consult an attorney to discuss your particular case and to obtain legal advice.

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