How to Get a Restraining Order in Arkansas

Getting a restraining order in Arkansas involves following specific legal procedures set by the state. This article will guide you through the steps to obtain a restraining order in Arkansas.

What Is a Restraining Order?

A restraining order, also known as a protective order, is a legal document issued by a court to protect someone from harassment, stalking, or domestic violence. This court order prohibits the restrained person from contacting or coming near the protected individual.

Who Can Get a Restraining Order in Arkansas?

In Arkansas, a person who has been a victim of domestic abuse, harassment, stalking, or sexual assault can file for a restraining order. The individual seeking the protective order is known as the petitioner, and the person the order is against is the respondent.

What Are the Steps to Get a Restraining Order in Arkansas?

  1. File a Petition: The petitioner must go to the district court in the county where they live or where the respondent lives and file a petition for a restraining order.
  2. Provide Information: The petitioner needs to provide detailed information about the incidents of abuse or harassment, including dates, times, and locations.
  3. Attend a Hearing: A judge will review the petition and may schedule a hearing to determine whether to issue a temporary restraining order.
  4. Serve the Respondent: If the temporary restraining order is granted, the respondent must be served with the order by law enforcement.
  5. Final Hearing: A final hearing will be scheduled, where both parties can present evidence and testimony before the judge decides whether to grant a permanent restraining order.
  6. Obtain the Order: If the judge grants the permanent restraining order, the petitioner will receive a copy of the order, and it will be entered into law enforcement databases.

What Protections Does a Restraining Order Provide?

A restraining order in Arkansas can include provisions such as prohibiting the respondent from contacting the petitioner, staying away from their home or workplace, and relinquishing firearms. Violating a restraining order is a criminal offense.

How Long Does a Restraining Order Last in Arkansas?

A temporary restraining order in Arkansas typically lasts for up to 30 days until the final hearing. If a permanent restraining order is granted, it can be in effect for up to five years, depending on the circumstances of the case.

Can a Restraining Order Be Extended in Arkansas?

If the petitioner believes that they still need protection after the expiration of the restraining order, they can file a motion to extend the order. The court will review the request and decide whether to grant an extension.

What Should I Do If the Respondent Violates the Restraining Order?

If the respondent violates the terms of the restraining order, the petitioner should contact law enforcement immediately. The respondent may face criminal charges for violating the court order.

Closing Paragraph

Obtaining a restraining order in Arkansas is a legal process that requires following specific steps and providing evidence of harassment or abuse. If you believe you need protection from someone who is putting you in danger, consider seeking a restraining order and reaching out to legal resources for assistance.