Domestic Abuse & Harassment Restraining Orders Compassion, Strength & Planning in Times of Personal Crisis

Minneapolis Domestic Abuse Attorneys

Seek Protection with a Harassment Restraining Order

Domestic abuse is considered a serious offense in Minnesota, one that can result in misdemeanor or felony penalties. To protect victims of violence and abuse, Minnesota courts issue domestic abuse no contact orders, or DANCOs, as part of the criminal process. Should the terms of a DANCO be violated, the abuser may face additional penalties and consequences. In addition, victims may seek orders for protection (OFP) or harassment restraining orders (HRO) as forms of relief to keep the respondent from contacting the petitioner.

If you or someone you love is currently in danger of violence, contact Minnesota DayOne, a free, confidential domestic violence hotline, at (866) 223-1111 or call 9-1-1 for immediate assistance from law enforcement.

In Minnesota, a police officer can arrest an individual without a warrant if there is reason to believe that this individual committed an act of domestic violence against a family member or roommate within 72 hours.

What Is Domestic Abuse or Violence?

Domestic abuse, also known as domestic violence or intimate partner violence, occurs when one individual in an intimate relationship utilizes a certain pattern of behavior to gain control and power over another individual.

This type of abuse may be physical, but it could also include the following:

  • Mental abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Manipulation
  • Sexual abuse
  • Financial abuse
  • Control
  • Isolation
  • Intimidation
  • Verbal abuse (coercion, threats, and blame)

Types Protective Orders

Broadly defined, a protective order is issued by the court order to requires a respondent to stay away from the petitioner, or victim. There are different types of protective orders, depending on the circumstances, that may be issued in domestic violence cases:

Domestic Violence No Contact Order (DANCO)

Per Minn. Stat. §629.75, a DANCO is issued during a criminal proceeding against a defendant who was accused of domestic abuse, or the harassment or stalking of a member of the defendant’s family or household. DANCOs can also be issued when a defendant violated the terms of an order for protection or prior no contact order. Violation of this order will result in a misdemeanor for a first offense, or a felony if it the second violation within ten years or a prior conviction, or if the violation involved the use of a dangerous weapon.

Order for Protection (OFP)

Under Minnesota’s Domestic Abuse Act, Sec. 518B.01 MN Statutes, OFPs are civil orders by that are petitioned by the victim of domestic abuse to request a respondent stays away from them and their children. This petition for relief may be made by a household member, family member, guardian, minor over the age of 16, or a reputable adult over the age of 25 on behalf of a minor child or children. Violating an OFP is a misdemeanor with repeat violations resulting in felony penalties.

The kind of relief an OFP can deter may include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Prohibiting the respondent from committing any acts of domestic abuse
  • Awarding temporary child custody and parenting time
  • Prohibiting the respondent from contacting or communicating with the petitioner
  • Disallowing the respondent from going to the petitioner’s residence, workplace, or other areas
  • Requiring counseling and/or therapy
  • Having the respondent pay restitution

An OFP order will stay in effect for up to 2 years but could be extended for up to 50 if the court considers the respondent to be in continuous danger.

Harassment Restraining Order (HRO)

Under Minn. Stat. §609.748, “harassment” includes physical or sexual assault, dissemination of private sexual images, or repeated or persistent incidents involving unwanted actions or speech that negatively affect the victim’s safety, privacy, or security. Victims, parents, guardians, stepparents, and conservators may seek an HRO from the district court in the county where the harassment occurred on behalf of themselves or a minor. The victim does not have to be a resident of that county.

Minnesota Domestic Abuse Act

Minnesota’s Domestic Abuse Act gives the state’s courts permission to issue and enforce domestic violence no contact orders, orders of protection, and harassment restraining orders.

According to the act, domestic abuse, meaning abuse committed against a family member or household member, is considered:

  • Physical harm, bodily injury, or assault
  • Infliction of fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, or assault
  • Terroristic threats, criminal sexual conduct

Family or household member is defined as:

  • Spouse or former spouse
  • Parents
  • Children
  • Blood relatives
  • Individuals who live together or have lived together in the past
  • Persons involved in a significant romantic or sexual relationship
  • Individuals who have a child together

Consult with a Minneapolis Domestic Abuse Lawyer from Our Firm

If you or your loved one are seeking protection from domestic abuse, do not hesitate to contact our firm immediately. At Mack & Santana Law Offices, P.C., we provide compassionate legal services and work hard to protect our clients. It is our goal to help make your life better by providing you with a plan to move forward.

No one should have to endure abuse of any kind. Reach out to us online or call us today at (612) 712-3890 to seek protection against domestic abuse. Hablamos español.