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How to Get the No Contact Order Dropped

Posted by attorney James White

A surprising number of people approach me for information on how to get a NCO dropped. There are two aspects to the answer. One is procedural and the other informational. That is to say, what is the actual process for getting the order dropped. The other is what information do I need to provide to get the order dropped. Let's take each of those in turn.

Procedurally, you must get the issue in front of the Judge. Superior Courts will need the issue noted ahead of time. Nowadays, with most courts going electronic, you'll need to schedule a hearing through an electronic database. The easiest way to make this happen is to hire a lawyer in the jurisdiction where you want the matter heard. This is particularly true if you are the petitioner/alleged victim as you will not have a public defender assisting you. Most jurisdictions have domestic violence advocates who are supposed to help you get the order removed if you so desire. However, many domestic violence advocates maintain the patronizing behavior of not helping the alleged victim attain his/her goal but impose a judgmental world view of deciding they know what is best for the alleged victim. Bottomline, they may not help you get your request in front of the Judge. This is part of the reason you are best off hiring a lawyer. Many municipal and district courts will let you address the Judgd on any day when the underlying charge is already scheduled. So, get the attention of the defense attorney, prosecutor, clerk or advocate to make sure the Judge knows you are there.

Informationally, you'll need to address the valid concerns of the Judge. Note, the Judge does not want to try the case and usually will not be interested in hearing that the underlying assault/harassment/etc did not happen. Instead, what the Judge wants to hear is information to the effect that the assault/harassment/etc will not happen again. So, if drugs/alcohol were being used when the incident happened the defendant going entering into chemical dependency treatment will go along way to alleviating the Judge's concerns. Similarly, if the defendant really is abusive than starting domestic violence batterer's treatment will do the same. Other information that will benefit you is showing the Judge that you are not dependent upon the defendant, showing you have family, friends or community support, that you have the ability to get help if necessary, and that you have an escape plan in place if needed. All of these things go far to removing the Judge's concerns. To a great extent, having your own attorney drives home the point that you are independent so benefits you in a number of ways when seeking to have a no contact order dropped.

Always remember. The no contact order is in place for your own protection. Never lie to the Judge to have it lifted as you may be endangering yourself.

Additional resources provided by the author

Contact a local defense attorney for more information.

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