No. There are a number of different types of restraining orders under Oregon law. Some can be sought by a minor directly; others require that a guardian ad litem be appointed to bring a matter to the court on a minor's behalf. That typically would BE a parent, although a different adult could ask to be appointed. However, none of these types of orders can be issued for "emotional trauma" alone ("severe" or otherwise). Some kind of physical harm, or threat of imminent serious physical harm, or sexual assault, is required, before a restraining order can be issued.
Child abuse is defined under Oregon law in ORS 419B.005. It includes a wide variety of physical or sexual offenses against children, and a lot of provisions related to drugs; but the only purely "emotional" form of abuse that the law can recognize is "Any mental injury to a child, which shall include only observable and substantial impairment of the child’s mental or psychological ability to function caused by cruelty to the child, with due regard to the culture of the child" (see ORS 419B.005(1)(a)(B)). So it's not as though emotional harm to a child is not something that the law recognizes at all; but we also recognize that we have such a hard time understanding the dynamics of any individual's psyche, or of any family's behavior, that we should only be stepping in with legal force in clear-cut and serious cases.
If you are concerned that a child is at risk of imminent harm, you can call the child abuse reporting hotline. Every Oregon county has a 24-hour hotline for reporting abuse and neglect of children. When you make a report, the Department of Human Services (DHS)'s Child Protective Services (CPS) division will dispatch an investigator, accompanied by police if appropriate, to make a report. If abuse or neglect is found, the state can ask parents to enter into a 'safety plan' that requires them to do (or not do) certain things; in an extreme case, or if a safety plan is violated, it can initiate a juvenile dependency proceeding and remove the child from the parents' care. Normally this means going into foster care, but they may be placed with a suitable relative, if one is willing. There are no guarantees here: no guarantee that CPS will find abuse; no guarantee that the state will file a juvenile case, and no guarantee that the child will be placed where they want to be. No one is really in control of these proceedings, so this shouldn't be done casually. Still, this is an important resource if a child is at imminent risk of harm. A complete list of hotline numbers is available here: http://www.oregon.gov/dhs/children/child-abuse/Pages/Reporting-Numbers.aspx
It's worth realizing, too, that most adults, when they hear a minor saying that an adult has caused them "emotional trauma," might be inclined to attribute that to teenage rebelliousness and drama, rather than active wrongdoing on the part of the adult. I don't make any judgments about that here, not knowing anything of the facts; just be aware that people may perceive things that way. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof; and, though it's not fair, people making those claims will sound more credible if they can be humble and self-analytical, than if they're just rushing to blame everyone else without stopping to think about it.
Please read the following notice: Jay Bodzin is licensed to practice law in the State of Oregon and the Federal District of Oregon, and cannot give advice about the laws of other jurisdictions. All comments on this site are intended for informational purposes only, and are not intended to constitute legal advice, create an attorney-client relationship, or solicit business. No posts or comments on this site are in any way confidential. Each case is unique. Information not contained in these posts may create significant exceptions to the advice provided in any response. You are advised to have counsel at all stages of any legal proceeding, and to speak with your own lawyer in private to get advice about your specific situation.
Well, I suppose so, but a minor, being a minor will have to have appointed a guardian ad litem in order to file the petition.
It might be much easier to get some help from Children's Services if there is abuse taking place.
This comment is general in nature and is not intended as legal advice. It does not create an attorney client relationship and obviously is not confidential. You should contact an attorney in your area who can review with you all of the relevant facts and give you specific legal advice.
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