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What evidence do you need to get a restraining order.

Massachusetts |
Attorney answers 3


Restraining orders are most often issued to people who present evidence that they have been threatened with physical harm. Any notes, letters, voice mails, or texts from the person you're seeking protection from that threatens, even implicitly, physical harm will generally be sufficient evidence for a restraining order. Even a declaration from you or an affidavit from a witness that describes verbal threats or actions that imply a threat (breaking things around you and other violent behavior) will be considered. If the restraining order is based on harassment evidence of repeated offensive conduct will be needed. The fewer incidents of harassment the more offensive the conduct needs to be.


According to MA General Laws ch. 209A, the petitioner needs to prove a substantial likelihood of immediate danger of "abuse", abuse being defined as the occurrence of one or more of the following acts between family or household members: (a) attempting to cause or causing physical harm; (b) placing another in fear of imminent serious physical harm;(c) causing another to engage involuntarily in sexual relations by force, threat or duress. “Family or household members” are persons who:
(a) are or were married to one another; (b) are or were residing together in the same household;
(c) are or were related by blood or marriage; (d) having a child in common regardless of whether they have ever married or lived together; or (e) are or have been in a substantive dating or engagement relationship.


the offender does not get a restraining order. The restraining order is issued against the offender if a judge believes that threats were committed as stated above, or that was hitting or a sexual assault.

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