Temple City, CA asked in Criminal Law, Domestic Violence and Family Law for California

Q: My ex boyfriend came at me with a knife I called the cops he was taken in for misdemeanor battery the DA dropped charges

They said all I can do is get a restraining order. Is there anything else I can do? He has a current restraining order from last girlfriend and two felonies that were not related to domestic abuse but still..

2 Lawyer Answers

Dale S. Gribow

  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Palm Desert, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: more info needed.

I would contact a criminal lawyer in your community and get a restraining order.

write out a detailed summary of the facts so that when you talk to a lawyer s/he gets all the facts.

i would also alert the local police of your fear for your safety.

Donald Arthur Hilland

  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • San Fernando, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: I have to be a lawyer here and answer your question by asking some questions. I am sympathetic, but what you need most is action, not sympathy.

How long were you together? And do you have any children together? Do you know his family?

Does he work and without identifying him what does he do? How much does he earn? Is he at least stable in his job?

I'm asking these questions for a reason. I disagree that you should contact a criminal attorney.. If you did not get a criminal protective order, which I would you would have from the police or the criminal court, then you need to file for a temporary restraining order through the family law court, because you were in a relationship, and that is something you cannot wait to do. In other words, the longer you wait, the less likely the judge is to grant it. And you need a family law attorney to do it, because they are the ones that are most experienced in these hearings.

Filing the request is done mostly with forms and any courthouse in Los Angeles can provide you the forms. You need the Domestic Violence Restraining Order because you were in a relationship. There is no fee for filing. Only certain courthouses will hear the matter. the procedure is that you fill out the forms, get a judge to sign an order and then serve it on him through an independent person, not you or your attorney in other words. A hearing will be set within 21 days and he must appear and defend your request. You must have him served at least 2-5 days before the hearing.

If you have children, have the judge make orders regarding child support and child visitation. If not, then skip that part.

If you know his family, make sure you mail them a copy as well so that they can intervene and help protect you.

You can get help from one of the courthouse help centers to fill out the forms. The volunteers are pretty knowledgeable and know how to write it up. After you get the hearing date, though, you should definitely hire an attorney. Here's why. You have a much better chance of winning and getting a permanent restraining order rather than a temporary one which will expire in 21 days. If he is working steady and the judge grants, the lawyer can get the judge to order him to pay for your attorney fees and costs. The attorney will know what evidence you need besides a police report which is technically inadmissible hearsay. You will not know and I have seen many people lose, in which case you are really in a worse position than you are now. So don't fool around and try to do the hearing by yourself. I've seen many while waiting in court that could have won, but did not because they did not bring the proper evidence which was obviously available from the testimony. Get help from an experienced family law attorney who has successfully completed these hearings before.

Even if he is not a reliable worker or between jobs, you should get an attorney to represent you and you may still get the judge to order him to pay your fees. because the judge will take you much more seriously if you are represented. And people usually say things they should not without advice from an attorney. If you want the restraining order to be permanent, hire an experienced attorney because you chances increase drastically.

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