If you’re a victim of domestic violence in Ohio, there are steps you can take to safeguard yourself and prevent future contact with the abuser. One of these is a civil protection order (CPO).
Cincinnati attorney John Heilbrun can help you understand your options, protect your rights and guide you through the legal process. Please call The Law Office of John Heilbrun at 513-321-3940 to schedule your confidential consultation with Mr. Heilbrun.
A Civil Protection Order may be granted to one spouse against the other by the Domestic Relations Court. This is an action that may be filed regardless of whether there is a divorce proceeding pending. If one spouse believes that he or she has been a victim of domestic violence perpetrated by the other spouse, the victim may file a Petition for a Civil Protection Order in the Domestic Relations Court. Initially, the victim spouse will be required to testify under oath in front of a Magistrate, as to the acts committed by the other spouse that the Petitioner spouse believes constitute domestic violence. If based on the testimony provided the Magistrate concludes that domestic violence has been committed, an ex parte Order will be issued. This Order may require the other spouse to stop the abuse, vacate the residence, establish temporary parenting orders regarding the parties’ minor children, and will prohibit the alleged perpetrator from having any contact with the victim spouse. The case will then be scheduled for a full hearing within ten days at which time both parties will have the opportunity to testify and/or present other evidence, as well as to cross-examine each other or any other witnesses who may be called to testify. If based on the evidence presented at that hearing, the Magistrate determines, by the greater weight of the evidence, that an act of domestic violence has been committed, the Magistrate will issue an Order that could last up to five years prohibiting the spouse who committed the domestic violence from having contact with the spouse who was the victim.
Domestic violence may also result in a criminal prosecution of the perpetrator of the act. Generally, criminal domestic violence proceedings will be initiated by the police who may be called to the scene where an act of domestic violence has occurred. Both criminal and civil domestic violence cases can proceed at the same time, and an Order for Civil Protection Order issued by the Domestic Relations Court will usually last longer than the Temporary Protection Order that may be issued in a criminal case.
The potential consequences for anyone charged with domestic violence, whether in a civil or criminal proceeding, may be substantial and significant, and anybody who is facing a civil or criminal charge of domestic violence should promptly consult with counsel. In addition, a spouse who believes that he or she is a victim of domestic violence committed by the other spouse may need the benefit of a Civil Protection Order even if a criminal prosecution has been instituted and a Temporary Protection Order has been entered in that case. Accordingly, a spouse who is the victim of domestic violence may also need legal representation.
If you’re seeking legal assistance for domestic violence charges, protection orders or divorce, please contact The Law Office of John Heilbrun to arrange your personal consultation. Mr. Heilbrun welcomes clients from the Cincinnati, Hyde Park, Blue Ash and Lebanon, Ohio, areas.