How To File A Restraining Order
A restraining order is a legal directive issued by a provincial court that mandates the preservation of a certain measure of distance between two individuals. It can be filed by anyone who has a cause to believe that there is a threat to their safety. A restraining order aids the security of victims of physical, emotional and psychological abuse as its violation can lead to criminal prosecution on the part of the offender.
This is because according to the Criminal Code of Canada, offences related to the administration of justice such as disobedience of a court order are indictable charges that lead to legal action by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada. Since a restraining order is an edict issued by the provincial court, its breach can be classified as an indictable offence.
Here’s a closer look at the process of how to get a restraining order:
Contact a Lawyer
Although anyone can apply for a restraining order directly, it is advisable to refer an experienced lawyer for the same. This is because, to ensure a prompt approval of your request, it is important to file for a restraining order correctly including a clear proof of danger. Most victims are unequipped to do so accurately. Consulting a lawyer makes sure your application is filed suitably incorporating all the necessary conditions to ensure your safety and the safety of your family.
Determine your Court of Appeal
A significant section of restraining orders is filed by the victims of domestic abuse. Since these offences are classified under Family law, claimants can apply for a restraining order at the family court of their respective locality or visit Alberta Court’s official website to determine their court of appeal. You can also consult a personal injury lawyer to help you decide the court of appeal for filing your order.
Draft the Conditions in your Order
Although a restraining order is usually filed to enforce a certain distance between the victim and the offender, it can also be modified to extend some degree of protection to the family and the friends of the victim. However, it is vital to ensure the order is worded carefully and these provisions are included in it precisely. Your lawyer can help you include the following remits in your restraining order:
- Ensuring the offender maintains a distance of 500 meters from the appellant
- Ensuring the offender cannot approach the appellant or her family and friends by any means
- Preventing the offender from visiting the appellant’s place of residence and work.
Serve the Respondent
Depending on the urgency of the request, you can apply for a restraining order with or without notice. A restraining order without notice is a suitable option in the cases of assault and family violence situations. Application for the same can be obtained from Alberta Government’s official portal. Post its submission in the presence of a Commissioner of Oaths, a copy of the application needs to be served to the respondent by a designated individual who has signed an Affidavit of Service for the same.
In the case of an Ex-Parte (without prior notice) restraining order, a copy of the mandate needs to be registered with the local police authorities of the province. Consulting an experienced law firm can guide you through the process of how to get a restraining order to ensure your safety and the security of your family.