Virginia Beach Restraining Orders

A restraining order is an order by the judge that prohibits a person from a certain action. Usually, in Virginia, the term restraining order applies most to the civil cases. Anybody who has reason to show a good cause to keep somebody from interfering or threatening them is subject to a restraining order. When a restraining order is used in Virginia Beach, it is generally keeping a person from doing something like selling something or going to a place. However, with a protective order, they apply more towards a person whereas restraining orders are more property-based.

If you have received a restraining order, contacting a domestic violence defense lawyer experienced with cases involving Virginia Beach restraining orders is crucial to make sure you understand all of the guidelines to the order.

Restraining Order Requirements

A restraining order requires the person to appear in front of a judge and they have to present the case to the judge. The victim has to show the judge if there is no restraining order, the complaining witness could suffer physical or financial harm by this person whom they are trying to get the restraining order against.

Violating a restraining order is very serious, no matter what kind of order it is. It can result in larger fines and possible jail time. If it is a civil matter, the person would be subject to a fine. If it is pursuant to a criminal matter, then they run the risk of active jail time.

Ex Parte Restraining Order

An ex parte restraining order is an order that is usually done on a temporary basis where the complaining witness appears in front of the judge and the defendant is not present. These are short-term, basically to protect the complaining witness and give the opportunity for law enforcement to serve the protective order on the defendant so that they can appear at a later date and argue whether or not this should go into effect.

The judge would grant it if the complaining witness can show that there is some fear of violence and it has to be something done quickly before any harm could come. Ex parte restraining orders are usually short-term. Often, it is one week so that they can file. These are usually emergency restraining orders and they give the police time to serve them, one week to 14 days, and then set up a full temporary restraining order hearing, which would then lead to a permanent restraining order.


The judge hears the evidence and makes a ruling based on what is presented and it could cause if it is not shown, them to modify the court order but the judge does not have to do it.

If the judge believes that the restraining order is necessary to keep in place past that initial period of time either because they had difficulty locating the complaining witness or if the complaining witness remains afraid and they need more time to evaluate things. If the party who asked for the protective order files a motion for the restraining order to be vacated, changed or extended, then the court can modify the terms of the protective order.

Impact on a Criminal Case

When a person is on a restraining order, they are often barred from the certain property and that limits their ability to collect evidence. It can also limit that person’s ability to access funds to live their life and can keep them from talking to people who could assist them in their case.

The longer a restraining order goes, that is one more restraint upon the person that limits what they can and cannot do. Often, these track with a criminal case so if the restraining order is in place, it may mean that the case is still going on.

Contacting an Attorney

Restraining orders can affect a person’s constitutional rights.  If violated, they could trigger mandatory jail time and can show up on records, which complicates the person’s future job prospects. If a person has a Virginia Beach restraining order lawyer who has experience, they can show that there is no need for a restraining order. Please reach out to a Virginia Beach restraining order attorney today to help build a case.