What Happens If You Violate An Order Of Protection?
There are many reasons why someone may file an order of protection against another person, and not all of those reasons are legitimate. However, regardless of whether the order has merit, the terms must be abided by until an attorney can help get the order of protection rescinded. Violating an order of protection is taken very seriously by the courts, even if the person who violates the order does not realize that they are doing something wrong. If you have been accused of violating an order of protection in the Williamson County area, talk to the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Fort, Holloway, & Rogers today to learn more about your legal options.
What Can an Order of Protection Do?
When most people think of an order of protection, they believe it means that a person must stay a certain distance away from someone else. However, that is only one element of an order of protection, and they can do much more. Some of the other restrictions that can be included in an order of protection in Tennessee include the following:
- Prohibiting calling, communicating, or otherwise contacting a person directly or indirectly through others,
- Prohibiting stalking,
- Granting temporary child custody to the filer of the order of protection,
- Ordering the payment of temporary alimony or child support,
- Granting sole possession of the family home to the filer of the order of protection,
- Mandating counseling,
- Revoking the right to use, possess, or purchase firearms,
- Awarding custody of a pet to the filer of the order of protection, and
- Anything else requested that the court deems appropriate.
Violation of any element in an order of protection can result in serious criminal penalties, even if the person is not engaging directly with the one who filed the order of protection.
Penalties for Violating an Order of Protection
The penalties for violating an order of protection can be serious and result in jail time, fines, and other consequences. Even if the person who filed the order reaches out, it is critically important that you do not violate the terms of the order until an attorney can get the order revoked in court. Knowingly violating an order of protection, even if you and the person who filed the order made up, can result in a Class A misdemeanor offense. Penalties can include more than eleven months in jail and fines up to $2,500. If an assault occurs when an order of protection is in place, it is automatically elevated to a Class C felony for aggravated assault. Conviction for a Class C felony includes between three and fifteen years in prison as well as fines up to $10,000. The prosecutor may add on other charges depending on the circumstances of the case, such as illegal possession of a firearm, civil or criminal contempt, and substantial extensions of the order of protection against you.
Talk to Our Office Today
If you need legal help after accusations of violating an order of protection, the experienced Franklin criminal defense attorneys at Fort, Holloway, & Rogers are here to help. Call or contact us today to learn more.