Document with the name restraining order

Consequences of Violating a Restraining Order

Wolf & Mote Law Group, LLC  June 5, 2023

Anyone who has been issued a restraining order knows how frustrating the situation can be. These kinds of orders are issued to restrict a person’s contact with another person, usually in situations where there is a history of violence or threats. They are granted often—in fact, 1.7 million restraining orders were issued in US courts in 2008 alone. Unfortunately, some people choose to violate these orders, either accidentally or intentionally. 

If you have violated a restraining order in Ohio or know someone who has violated one, it's important to understand the legal consequences. It’s also crucial to reach out to an attorney. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Wolf & Mote Law Group, LLC for legal advice and for skilled advocacy every step of the way. 

Types of Restraining Orders

There are different types of restraining orders that a judge can issue. Orders can be either civil or criminal protective orders (CPO), depending on the nature of the case.  

A civil restraining order is given to people who fear their safety from another individual, while a criminal restraining order is issued as part of a criminal proceeding.  

Both civil and criminal restraining orders prohibit the restrained person from contact with the protected person. This includes in-person contact, phone calls, direct messages, and indirect contact through third parties like friends and family. 

What Actions Are Prohibited?

Violating a restraining order is a serious offense and can lead to criminal charges and penalties. Some of the actions that are typically prohibited include: 

  • Contacting the person who obtained the restraining order, either directly or indirectly (including through third parties) 

  • Coming near the person who obtained the restraining order, their home, workplace, or any other place they frequent 

  • Harassing, threatening, or otherwise intimidating the person who obtained the restraining order 

Consequences of Violating a Restraining Order

If you violate a restraining order, the police will most likely arrest you immediately or shortly after the violation is reported. The violation of a restraining order is a criminal offense, and the authorities take it seriously. 

Violating a restraining order in Ohio is a criminal offense, and as such, you can face criminal charges if you violate it. You could be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the situation and the type of restraining order issued against you.  

For instance, if you have violated a restraining order that prohibits you from coming near someone, you could be charged with stalking. If you have violated a restraining order issued in a domestic violence case, you could be charged accordingly with domestic violence. 

You could be ordered to pay fines if you violate a restraining order. These fines can range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on the severity of the violation. 

Violating a restraining order can even lead to jail time. If you are found guilty of violating a restraining order, you could be sentenced to jail time ranging from a few days to years, depending on the severity of the violation.  

Finally, violating a restraining order can lead to a permanent criminal record. This record can affect your career opportunities, social life, and personal life. A criminal record can make it challenging to find a job, rent an apartment, or even travel outside the country. 

Protect Your Future With an Attorney’s Support

The lawyers at Wolf & Mote Law Group, LLC understand the impact that a restraining order violation has on your life. The team of experienced attorneys has the knowledge required to navigate these tough situations.  

If you live in Columbus or anywhere in the surrounding areas in Ohio—including Gahanna, Hilliard, Licking County, Fairfield County, or Delaware County—Wolf & Mote Law Group, LLC is here to help you move forward.