Those facing accusations of domestic violence may find themselves involved in the legal system for one of three reasons. The state may prosecute them, they may need to fight for custody of their children, or they may face a restraining order request.
Of those three risks, the restraining order may seem like the least serious. However, a restraining order could influence the state to bring criminal charges against you or even impact the outcome of your custody dispute.
You don’t need to wait for the courts to order you to move to a new home or restrict your right to freely visit wherever you want. You can defend yourself against a restraining order request before it brings consequences.
The burden of proof is on the person seeking the order
For someone to secure a permanent restraining order in Colorado, they need some kind of compelling evidence that their safety is at risk or at least they believe they are in danger. The victim’s perception of things may matter more than the intent of the accused party. For example, someone can take your text messages or emails out of context and make it sound like you had stalked or threatened them when you were just joking around in your usual way.
Although you may not be able to prevent someone from securing a temporary restraining order, you can probably defend against their attempt for a permanent restraining order. Finding witnesses to speak to your relationship history, collecting your own evidence and presenting your best side in court can all potentially help you avoid a restraining order and the secondary consequences that it will carry for you.
Taking proactive steps to protect yourself when accused of domestic violence can protect your freedom, your reputation and your relationships.