This is the next post in our series on how the issuance of a TPO may impact family law matters in Little Rock, Arkansas. Our last article provided an overview of topics which this series will be addressing. It also stressed the need to contact an attorney as soon as possible if you or a family member are in need of assistance. It is important that you contact counsel sooner, rather than later, as the Court will take such matters very seriously. In this article we will discuss another important topic – when Judges may or may not issue a Protective Order. If you are in need of assistance then contact our office today to speak with a lawyer.
Protective Orders are issued when there is a credible threat of stalking, harassment, or violence. A Judge will not issue an Order simply because one side is going through a bad break up and feels the other side is “nasty.” Also, it is important to understand that bickering does not constitute “harassment.” Suppose one side is repeatedly calling and texting the other. Now suppose that the other side is responding to the constant messaging and engaging in a back and forth. Under these circumstances, the Court would likely consider the conduct to be bickering between the two sides and not a situation in which one side is harassing the other. This is due to the fact that one will typically avoid someone who is harassing them as opposed to engaging in a back and forth. In other words, if you are simply arguing with your ex then such behavior is not likely to be seen as harassment, stalking, etc.
There are clear instances in which the issuance of a TPO is appropriate. Suppose one is messaging their ex non-stop and such messages are being ignored. A continuation of this behavior will likely cause the Judge to take action. Likewise, when there is clear stalking or threats of violence, and the other side is doing their best to avoid the situation, the Court will often take immediate action. The Court’s likelihood to act will increase with the presence of objective evidence which proves the conduct. Such evidence can include text messages, emails, phone records, witness statements, police reports, etc. Always remember that how the Court will rule in any given situation will always depend on the specific facts of the situation.
If you believe that you are in danger then contact our Little Rock TPO lawyers for assistance. Our attorneys understand the serious nature of such situations and we will take your case seriously. We are ready to assist you. We also handle matters in Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Springdale, Jonesboro, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff and throughout the rest of Arkansas.