Written by Canterbury Law Group

Scottsdale Domestic Violence: Civil Law and Criminal Law

The attorneys at Canterbury Law Group help clients obtain orders of protection in Scottsdale. We also assist in determining if your domestic violence case is a civil or criminal case.
In domestic violence situations, there may be both civil and criminal matters occurring at the same time as a result of the same violent act. You may want to pursue both civil and criminal actions for maximum protection. The major differences have to do with who takes the case to court, the reason for the case, and the possible penalties.

  • Civil Law – In a civil domestic violence action, you are asking the court to protect you from the person abusing you. You are not asking the court to send that person to jail for committing a crime. However, if the abuser violates the civil court order, s/he may be sent to jail for the violation. In a civil case, you are the person bringing the case against the abuser and (in most circumstances), you have the right to withdraw (drop) the case if you want to. A Scottsdale order of protection is requested in civil court. Once granted, they usually are valid for a period of one year and they sometimes can be renewed by the person originally obtained the order of protection.
  • Criminal Law – In stark contrast, the criminal law system handles all cases that involve violations of criminal law such as harassment, assault, murder, theft, etc. As such, only the government, via the local prosecutor or grand jury can make the final decision to “bring charges” against the bad actor who has engaged in bad acts.
    A criminal complaint involves your abuser being charged with a crime. In a criminal case, the prosecutor (also called the district attorney) is the one who has control over whether the case against the abuser continues or not. It is the county/state who has brought the case against the abuser, not the victim. It is possible that if you do not want the case to continue (if you do not want to “press charges”), the prosecutor might decide to drop the criminal charges but this is not necessarily true. The prosecutor can also continue to prosecute the abuser against your wishes and can even issue a subpoena (a court order) to force you to testify at the trial live under oath.

It is essential to contact an attorney to evaluate and invoke your rights when dealing with domestic violence either when allegations are brought against you, or where you bring them against another. Contact our Scottsdale lawyers today to schedule your consultation. www.clgaz.com 480-240-0040.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Campus Dating Violence and Orders of Protection

During the school season, many college co-eds, and parents of college-age kids, have questions about dating violence on campus. Dating violence is emotional, psychological, physical, sexual or financial abuse (or, sometimes, a combination of these) perpetrated over a sustained period of time in order to gain and/or maintain power and control in a dating relationship.

In an effort to negate dating violence, schools should maintain a robust dating violence, domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault prevention program for all incoming students and staff, with continuing education for older students throughout their time at the university.

The family law attorneys at Canterbury Law Group in Scottsdale, AZ. help victims of domestic violence secure legal protection against further abuse, whether on campus or off. If you’re looking to determine your legal options, the family law attorneys at Canterbury Law Group have extensive knowledge on orders of protection. Here are some quick facts:

  • A victim of domestic abuse means a person protected by the law and shall include any person who has been subjected to domestic abuse by a spouse, or any other person who is a present or former household member and where the victim is 18 years of age or older or who is an emancipated minor.
  • An order of protection is a court order intended to protect you from further harm from someone who has hurt you; to keep the abuser away from you, or to stop harassing you, or keep the abuser from the scene of the violence, which may include your home, place of work, or apartment. It is a civil order and it does not give the abuser a criminal record. An order of protection can prohibit third parties from constantly texting you or emailing you without consent.
  • If you are a victim of violence, a judge can sign an order that requires the abuser to obey the court. The protective order is very specific in as far as what the abuser can and can’t do, including having no contact in person or by phone, at home, work, or almost anywhere you ask the court to put in the order.

The family law team at Canterbury Law Group will help you and your loved ones stay safe. Call us today to schedule your consultation. 480-240-0040

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Johnny Depp Hearings Shine Spotlight on Abuse

The legal problems between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard over her claims of spousal abuse have been making international headlines. The two sides are due to face off as Heard pursues an extension of a domestic violence restraining order that was granted last month. The court set a status conference for August and the judge extended the temporary restraining order that bars Depp from going within 100 yards of Heard.

This celebrity case has raised the importance of protection against domestic violence. At Canterbury Law Group, we know first hand that there are many misconceptions on abuse. If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, here are some answers to common questions:

1. What is Domestic Violence? When you are in a relationship with someone who uses threats, harasses, molests, stalks, attacks, batters or strikes you, your family or your children, that person is committing Domestic Violence. If you are experiencing Domestic Violence, you have a legal right to seek relief from the courts by procuring a protective order.

In the State of Arizona, Domestic Violence includes a variety of abusive acts. You must be able to show the court that the person from whom you want protection has committed or may commit an act of Domestic Violence. You do not have to be physically injured or hurt to be a victim of Domestic Violence. Domestic violence occurs if the other person has done or attempts to:

  • endanger you threaten, intimidate, or harass you interfere with the custody of your children;
  • trespass on or damage your property;
  • restrain you, kidnap, or hold you prisoner;
  • assault you with his/her body or with a weapon;
  • display a deadly weapon or threaten you with a deadly weapon;
  • surreptitiously (without your knowledge) photograph, videotape, film or record you.

2. What types of protective orders are available in Arizona? A Protective Order is a document obtained from a court, to order the abusive person not to contact you and to prevent future abusive behavior. In Arizona there are five types of protective orders:

  • Order of Protection – An Order of Protection is a legal restraint used to prohibit a person from committing acts of domestic violence or from contacting people protected by the order. It also provides several kinds of protective relief, such as removing firearms from the home, adding other people to the protective order, and exclusive use of the home.
  • Emergency Order of Protection – An Emergency Order of Protection is also a legal restraint to prevent domestic violence. An Emergency Order may be granted by an authorized judicial officer in writing, verbally or by telephone for the protection of a person in “imminent and present danger of domestic violence.”
  • Release Order – In rural counties where it is not required that a judicial officer be designated to issue Emergency Orders when the courts are closed, emergency protection is available through a registered Release Order. Arizona law provides that, when a person arrested for an act of domestic violence is released from custody, any Release Order shall include pretrial release conditions necessary to protect the alleged victim and other specifically designated persons.
  • Injunction Against Harassment – The Injunction Against Harassment orders a person to stop harassing, annoying or alarming another person. Injunctions can be used for disputes against neighbors, strangers, and people who were not dating.
  • Injunction Against Workplace Harassment – The Injunction Against Workplace Harassment is the newest protective order available in Arizona. It allows an employer or an agent of an employer to file for relief on behalf of all employees at the workplace, against any person who enters the employer’s property and any person who is performing official work duties.

3. How and where can I get an Order of Protection or an Injunction Against Harassment? You may file a petition for an Order of Protection or Injunction Against Harassment in any superior, municipal or justice court regardless of where you live in Arizona. When you enter the court, go to the Clerk of the Court’s counter, Self Service Center, or protection order window and tell the clerk you are requesting an Order of Protection or an Injunction Against Harassment. The clerk will give you the proper Petition forms. Plan on being at the court house for several hours.

If you’re experiencing domestic violence, hiring a family law attorney can be critical to your future. Call the Scottsdale layers at Canterbury Law Group today to schedule you consultation. 480-240-0040.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Order of Protection Used to Stop Domestic Violence

The Scottsdale attorneys at Canterbury Law Group help survivors of domestic violence utilize legal protection options to defend themselves from further abuse, including obtaining an order of protection. An order of protection is long term, typically for one to five years, and in extreme circumstances, for up to a lifetime. A victim can also renew the order of protection if he or she still feels threatened by his or her abuser.

An order of protection may include many different provisions, including:

  • No Contact Provision – Prohibiting the abuser from calling, texting, emailing, stalking, attacking, hitting, or disturbing the victim
  • Peaceful Contact Provision – Permitting the abuser to peacefully communicate with the victim for limited reasons, including care and transfer for visitation of their child
  • No Contact Provision – Prohibiting the abuser from calling, texting, emailing, stalking, attacking, hitting, or disturbing the victim
  • Stay Away Provision – Ordering the abuser to stay at least a certain number of yards or feet away from the victim, his or her home, job, school, and car. The stay-away distance can vary by state, judge or the lethality of the situation, but is often at least 100 yards or 300 feet
  • Move Out Provision – Requiring the abuser to move out of a home shared with the victim
  • Firearms Provision – Requiring the abuser to surrender any guns he or she possesses (about 2/3rds of states) and/or prohibiting the abuser from purchasing a firearm
  • Counseling Provision – Ordering the abuser to attend counseling, such as batterer’s intervention or anger management

Order of protections may also include children, other family members, roommates or current romantic partners of the victim. This means the same no contact and stay away rules apply to any other listed individual, even if the direct harm was to the victim. Some states allow pets to be protected by the same order, as abusers may harm pets to torment their victims.

If you’re in need of protection, call us today to start the process of filing for an order or protection. Or if you have been recently served with an order of protection, and you feel wrongfully accused, you need to speak to a lawyer immediately. Delaying your response to an order of protection only makes it more challenging to have it quashed by a judge in court later. 480—240-0040. www.canterburylawgroup.com

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Deciphering Orders of Protection

Survivors of domestic violence have several civil lawsuit options to protect themselves from future abuse. At Canterbury Law Group, we often help clients navigate through these options to maximize their personal safety and security.

Emergency Protection Order – In some states, the police can give the victim (or person believed to be the victim) an Emergency Protection Order (EPO). An EPO is a short-term protection order typically given to a victim by the police or magistrate when his or her abuser is arrested for domestic violence. The EPO is generally for limited period, such as three or seven days. This permits the victim time with an EPO in place to request a longer-term protection order.

Order of Protection – All 50 states and the District of Columbia have statutes for some form of protective order. However, states call these orders different things such as protective orders, orders of protection and injunction for protection against domestic violence or injunctions against harassment.

A protective order is different from an EPO because it is longer term, typically for one to five years, and in extreme circumstances, for up to a lifetime. A victim can renew the protection order, if he or she still feels threatened by his or her abuser.

Protective orders may include children, other family members, roommates, or current romantic partners of the victim. This means the same “no contact” and “stay away” rules apply to the other listed individuals, even if the direct harm was to the victim. Some states allow pets to be protected by the same order, as abusers may harm pets to torment their victims.

Restraining Order – A restraining order is judge imposed court order requiring parties involved in a lawsuit to do or not do certain things. It may be part of a family law case, such as a divorce, or other civil codes. Restraining orders may be requested “ex parte” meaning that one party asks the court to do something without telling the other party. If the restraining order is granted ex parte, than the other party is later permitted a hearing to present their side of the story. This is often the process for protective orders also. As restraining orders also vary by state, it’s important to consult with an attorney familiar with the law where you live. Go to www.canterburylawgroup.com for more information.