A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) is a court-issued order that prevents a person from initiating or having certain types of contact with the victim. TROs can play a role in divorce proceedings, and in the resolution of domestic abuse cases.

Deciding when to get a temporary restraining order is an important consideration to protect yourself.

What is a Temporary Restraining Order in Divorce and Domestic Abuse?

Divorce and domestic violence are both complicated and emotional situations that can lead to further harm to a person or victim.

In divorce, bad behavior can be directed by a person against the other spouse or even the children. The emotional, financial, or even physical acts stemming from divorce may require some level of protection. A vindictive or greedy spouse can clean out bank accounts, move the children out of state, and cancel insurance policies.

A temporary restraining order can help reduce the impact of this type of divorce-related destructive behavior. It maintains the current status quo until the terms of the divorce are final.

Domestic abuse is another instance when TROs are commonly used. Domestic violence refers to harmful acts done by a person to control another. These acts may be physical, emotional, sexual or verbal in nature, involving threats, intimidation, isolation and/or financial control.

In the case of domestic abuse, TROs provide victims with temporary protection from further abuse, until a final restraining order and permanent protection are decided on.

TROs stop a domestic abuser from having certain types of contact with the victim. This can mean that the abuser must leave a previously shared home, and must stay away from their workplace.

In both cases, a TRO can order a person from having any type of contact with the complainant, ranging from in-person contact to written and online contact, and contact through a third party. The TRO can extend to the children of the victim of abuse and other household members.

Within 10 days of issuing a TRO, the judge will require the victim and the abuser or spouse to return to court to determine if a final restraining order should be issued. The TRO may be extended indefinitely.

How to Get a Temporary Restraining Order

A temporary restraining order can be filed during normal business hours at the Family Division of the Supreme Court. The complaint or application will be considered by the judge. Ultimately, the best interests of the victim and any children are the basis for issuing a TRO.

What are the temporary restraining order requirements?

In New Jersey, you must be at least 18 years old or an emancipated minor in order to be eligible for a TRO. The abuser must also be at least 18 years old or an emancipated minor. Otherwise, the case against the abuser will be tagged as a juvenile delinquency case.

A relationship between the victim and the person being filed against must be any of the following:

  • Spouse or former spouse
  • Sharing a child or expecting a shared child
  • Currently or formerly dating
  • Currently or formerly sharing a household

How long does a temporary restraining order last?

In divorce proceedings, a TRO normally expires at the end of the process. Outstanding issues should have been resolved through a detailed settlement agreement or through a trial by that time.

In domestic violence cases, TROs usually last until a full hearing is done, which usually happens within a week, or until a final restraining order is issued.

Where Can You Get a Temporary Restraining Order In NJ?

An attorney with experience in handling divorce and domestic violence cases will give you the guidance you need in filing a complaint and getting a temporary restraining order in New Jersey. An attorney can also assist in filing a criminal complaint against the abuser aside from the civil action of getting a TRO.

Family law cases are always difficult. Proceedings can be emotionally charged and complex to handle. The Law Offices of James C. Dezao, PA, has over 25 years in handling family law cases with empathy and care. For legal services, you can rely on, contact Dezao Law today. Contact us today at (973) 358-6134.