Domestic violence is a plague in this country. In Monroe County, New York, the number of these cases totaled nearly 4,800 in 2016 alone. This includes reports of aggravated assault, sex offenses, parole violations for sex offenders and violations of protection orders. That number is down slightly from 2015, but it is still a disturbing number and jeopardizes the safety of not only the victims, but their children and extended family members as well.

Many victims seek medical help and even request assistance from legal advocates, as they plan their escape. There are often legal considerations, such as custody issues, divorce, property divisions and in a growing number of cases, many victims seek an order of protection in Rochester, NY. As part of a multi-prong plan, many victims can now secure a protection order without leaving themselves physically vulnerable in the process.

If you feel you need an order of protection, please keep reading as we provide the most recent information from the state of New York.

There are more than a few types of orders of protection in Rochester and throughout the state, each designed to address any conceivable need for someone wishing to escape domestic violence. Those protection order types include:

  • Emergency orders of protection
  • Temporary orders of protection
  • Family offense orders of protection
  • Temporary or final orders of protection (as they relate to a divorce)

Police, probation/parole officers, prosecutors and your attorney can help ensure you are receiving all the legal protections to keep you safe. Offenders must be held accountable and the different types of protection orders in Rochester can help ensure the specifics of that accountability are adequately addressed.

Audrey E. Stone, who is Chief Counsel at the Office of the Statewide Coordinating Judge for Family Violence Cases in New York’s Office of Court Administration, speaks about remote access to temporary orders of protection. This relatively new program alleviates what is described as “significant obstacles” for victims wishing to secure an order of protection, but who may not have transportation or child care.

A hearing can be held ex-parte (which means your partner won’t be privy to the proceedings) and via electronic methods, such as Skype or other video teleconferencing platforms. This allows a victim to not raise suspicions by leaving the home unexpectedly in order to keep a court date. It also addresses the challenges associated with possible child care conflicts or transportation issues. Once the order of protection is secured, it can provide important leverage for a victim to plot his or her next move.

To that end, we encourage anyone who is planning to escape a violent relationship to consider the legalities, especially if there are children involved. We have helped many domestic violence victims in Rochester and Monroe County as they carefully planned an escape that protected them and their children.

Leaving a relationship is never easy, but with a bit of guidance and compassion, coupled with the support of the legal system, even the most dangerous escapes are now safer. Our family lawyers can help. Contact our offices today for a completely confidential and free consultation with our family law attorneys.