Domestic Violence Attorney: Restraining Orders 

Domestic violence occurs when one person (the abuser) abuses or threatens to abuse another (abused). Normally, the abuser and abused are in an intimate relationship together, either a marriage, domestic partnership, dating, or cohabiting. 

However, this type of abuse also extends to other immediate family members and extended relatives. Be it psychological, emotional, mental, or physical, abuse is abuse. It’s important to know that you always have legal avenues at your disposal, a restraining order being one of them (which we discuss below). This is where the Family Law Specialists at the Law Offices of Kara S. Holtz in San Rafael and Redwood City can help you. Attorney Holtz has extensive experience working with Domestic Violence. She has done thousands of restraining orders.  Form her prior experience at a non-profit organization that assisted victims of domestic abuse to her current practice, she is well versed in assisting you with restraining orders.  

Domestic Violence More In Depth

Domestic violence is legally defined as:

  • Physically hurting another: hitting, kicking, pushing, shoving, throwing objects at you, etc.
  • Sexual assault
  • Harassing
  • Stalking
  • Threatening
  • Destroying personal property
  • Disturbing another’s peace
  • Making someone else feel afraid for his or her life, or another’s life

Restraining Orders: What You Need to Know

A restraining order is an order from the court used to protect the abused from the abuser. You may file a restraining order if you have been previously abused or threatened, or you are in a close relationship with this person. If your child is abused or you are afraid that he or she will be, you can file a restraining order on behalf of your child too.

Types of restraining orders you can file include:

  • Temporary Restraining Order (TRO): Restraining order is effective for 20-25 days
  • Permanent Restraining Order: Restraining order is effective up to 5 years
  • Criminal Protective Order: Restraining order during a criminal case; can be effective up to 3 years after the case is over and the individual is found guilty


blonde hair woman in a jacket leaning against a wall outside with her head down, domestic violence attorney

How a Restraining Order Can Protect You

Once you have filed a restraining order, the abuser cannot come close to you or your relatives, or contact you. This means they must stay away from your work, house, and children’s schools. If you live together, they must move out.  It is important to note that this is just a piece of paper, and your safety is contingent on other factors that Kara S. Holtz can discuss with you to create a safety plan.

A restraining order can also legally mandate that the individual:

  • Is not allowed to have a gun
  • Must pay child support (if you have a child together) and abide by visitation orders
  • Must pay partnership or spousal support (if you are in a marriage or domestic partnership)
  • Cannot change his or her insurance policy
  • Must not come close to your pets
  • Must regularly attend and finish a batterer intervention program

If the individual you have the restraining order against violates it, he or she must pay a fine, go to jail or a combination of the two.

What You May Not Know About a Restraining Order

Contrary to what some may think, a restraining order cannot dissolve your marriage or domestic partnership (if you are in a marriage or domestic partnership with this individual). It also cannot establish parentage.

Legal Support by Holtz Law

Navigating the ins and outs of domestic violence and restraining orders is complicated, to say the least. For legal support in Northern California, from San Rafael to Redwood City, contact Kara S. Holtz, experienced domestic violence attorney. You may also call Holtz Law at (451)-785-4129 (North Bay Office) or (650)-632-4380 (South Bay Office).  We look forward to answering your questions.