In either a temporary or Final Protection From Abuse Order, the Court has the authority to award the Plaintiff temporary custody of minor children the Plaintiff and you, the Defendant, co-parent. The Court additionally has authority to grant a Protection From Abuse order on behalf of minor children against the Defendant. In both of these cases, if you are prevented or limited in seeing your children, you would have to pursue a separate custody action in order to attempt to expand your custodial rights.
In a Protection From Abuse Order, the Court can give the Plaintiff 'exclusive possession' of a residence, meaning that the Court can specifically allow the Plaintiff to live in a residence while excluding the Defendant from living in that residence. The Defendant can be excluded from living at his/her own residence, even if the Defendant owns the house (certain limitations apply). Additionally, the Court can also Order the Defendant to provide the Plaintiff with suitable 'alternative' housing, if the Court finds that the Defendant has a duty to support either the Plaintiff or the children in Plaintiff's care.
The Court can award the Plaintiff money for temporary support (e.g., medical, spousal or child support) or money for damages. The Court has broad authority in determining what amount a Plaintiff should be awarded.
Your Right to Bear Arms
The Court can Order a Defendant to relinquish all firearms, weapons, ammunition, and/or firearms license if it is alleged that there were weapons involved in the perpetration of abuse. The Court can also prevent a Defendant from possessing new firearms for the duration of the Protection From Abuse Order.
Fine and/or Imprisonment
If a Court finds that you, the Defendant, violated a Temporary or Final Protection From Abuse Order, the Court has the authority to fine the you an amount of up to $1,000.00 and/or imprison you for a period of up to six months.
Please note that this article is intended only to provide a general, non-specific overview of this particular area of law and is not intended for purposes of providing legal advice for any specific legal situation.
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