This is the next post in my series discussing information related to obtaining a TPO in Las Vegas as a result of domestic violence. My last post discussed what the accused should do if a frivolous TPO is filed against them. In this post, I will discuss what a domestic violence victim should do once a TPO has been filed with the Clark County Family Court.
One who has filed for TPO in Las Vegas should not attempt to contact their abuser for any purpose
The victim who has filed a TPO request with the Clark County Family Court should not contact their listed abuser for any reason. While the person who has filed the TPO is not legally barred from contacting the abuser, doing so will reflect poorly on their request. A Judge will likely dissolve the Protective Order as a result. The reason for this is that the Court will not view the victim as being in fear for their safety; if they are comfortable enough to continue communication with the abuser then it is believed they are not afraid. Worse yet, the Court may view the TPO filer as “playing games” or attempting to manipulate the system if they have an outstanding child custody or divorce case open. The Courts will not view kindly to a person if they believe that you have taken out a TPO against a person in order to attempt and get them into legal trouble.
If your abuser attempts to contact you once they have been served with a TPO then it is important to keep all documentation and contact your attorney. If your abuser comes to your home then it is important to contact police right away. When you leave your home it is important to keep your TPO documents with you at all times. For example, keep them in your car or in a purse. If your abuser approaches you in a public place, you may call law enforcement for assistance, but it will be important to readily show your document of protection. Many Las Vegas residents fail to take these steps and problems arise as a result.
A TPO hearing will determine if your need for protection should be extended
The initial 30 days following a TPO are given to almost everyone who files – assuming they show a legitimate threat. During that time period you will have to decide if you need to ask the Court for an extension. Extending a TPO and making it more permanent is serious and you will have to provide some proof that you are in danger on a continuous basis. Asking the Court to limit a person’s freedom for a period of time is a large request. It should only be made after truly considering the amount of danger one is in. If you share children with the person listed in your TPO then an extended protection request may have lasting effects on how you parent. These are all factors that a person must begin thinking about from the time their initial TPO is granted up until the hearing 30 days later.
If you have filed for a TPO against your abuser then you have a responsibility to avoid contact and a right to call police if the TPO is violated. If you have questions or concerns related to your TPO then contact me to speak with a Las Vegas TPO lawyer.