Violating a Protection Order

Protection orders often arise out of painful, complicated situations involving people you love or used to be close to. Allegations of violating that protection order can throw that situation even further into turmoil, especially since most judges think erring on the side of right means protecting the alleged victim – even if that alleged victim is using the protective order as a weapon.

Violating a protection order in Franklin County is a serious offense that can result in serious penalties. An attorney experienced in Ohio domestic violence laws will fight to ensure your rights are protected while fighting for a favorable outcome.

Columbus Protection Order Violation Attorney

Also commonly known in Ohio as a restraining order, a protection order is intended to protect an alleged victim, but when used as weapon or when a misunderstanding causes allegations of a violation, it can do so at the expense of the alleged offender and possibly do more harm than good. If you have been accused of violating your protection order in Columbus, Grove City, Westerville, Lancaster, Springfield, Reynoldsburg, Delaware, Dublin, or the surrounding areas, contact the experienced Columbus defense attorneys at Joslyn Law Firm.

We will fight to resolve all aspects of your violation allegation in a favorable way. Your first consultation is free, so call (614) 444-1900.


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Types of Ohio Protection Orders

Ohio protection orders are issued for many different purposes, but all are usually means to the same end – to protect an alleged victim from being harassed and/or violated by an alleged offender. The types of protection orders in Ohio include:

Temporary Protection Order (TPO).

Before the case has been resolved, the alleged victim may seek a TPO.  A TPO is an order from the court that prohibits the alleged offender from having any contact with the victim and/or the victim’s family and/or pets.  The order may cover the home or public places, such as schools, places of employment or other public locations.  This order also prohibits the alleged offender from possessing weapons intended to injure or harm the victim or others around the victim.  Violation of the TPO is a criminal offence.

Civil Protection Order (CPO).

Under the Ohio Revised Code Section 3113.31, alleged victims of domestic violence can seek a CPO, which provides legal protection against violence occurring within the family unit.  The alleged harm or threat of injury must be perpetrated by a family or household member. An alleged victim can file for a CPO without an attorney.  Violation of the CPO is a civil offense.

By requesting a TPO or a CPO, the victim is demonstrating to the court that he or she is reasonably in fear, and the court will typically take the matter more seriously.  However, such orders complicate the alleged offender’s defense, as evidence entered in the civil case (for the CPO) may compromise the criminal procedure.  This is another reason it is necessary for an alleged offender to have legal representation.

Criminal Protection Orders

Criminal protection orders are issued by the criminal court in response to a crime, such as domestic assault, being committed. Anti-stalking protection orders are meant to protect the alleged victim from stalking and other non-physical harassment.

A violation of the terms of any of these agreements can result in serious penalties, so it is recommended to have an experienced Franklin County criminal defense attorney at your side through the entire process.


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Common Injunctions in Franklin County Protection Orders

What constitutes a violation of a protection order depends on the type of order issued and the specific injunctions against you listed in that order. It is of the utmost importance to know in detail what actions you are prevented from committing or required to perform according to the order. Some of these injunctions may include:

  • Refraining from entering or maintaining a specific distance from the alleged victim's residence, school, business, or place of employment
  • Attending required counseling
  • Providing financial support to the alleged victim
  • Prohibition from owning or purchasing a firearm or ammunition

The injunctions against you will vary according to the judge and the protections that the alleged victim asked for. If at any point you are questioning whether something is a violation of your Franklin County protection order, either err on the safe side and don't do it, or contact an experienced Columbus criminal defense lawyer for review. Given the severe civil and criminal penalties that come with a violation, it is always better to be safe than sorry.


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Consequences for Violating a Protection Order in Ohio

The consequences for violating a protection order in Ohio are very punitive, and rarely are judges sympathetic to the alleged offender for such violations. The penalties for violating a protective order in Ohio are defined in O.R.C. § 2919.27. Generally, a violation is a first-degree misdemeanor, which in Ohio comes with a maximum of 6 months in prison and a $1,000 fine.

If the alleged offender has previously been guilty of violation of the current or any previous protection order, or has had two or more violations of menacing, aggravated menacing, stalking, or aggravated trespass against the current alleged victim, the charge is upgraded to a fifth-degree felony. A fifth-degree felony is punishable by 6-12 months of prison time and a $2,500 fine. If the alleged offender violates the protection order while committing a felony, he or she could be facing a third-degree felony charge with 1-5 years of prison and a $10,000 fine.

Additionally, a protection order violation could also have severe consequences on housing applications, employment and educational opportunities, and anything that requires a background check. A violation of a protection order enables you to be arrested on sight for contempt of court. It is critical to contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately after you have violated or may have violated your Columbus-area protection order to begin protecting your rights.


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Joslyn Law Firm | Defense Lawyer for Violating Ohio Protection Orders

If you have been accused of violating your Franklin County, Pickaway County, Madison County, Delaware County, Licking County, or Fairfield County protection order or held in contempt of court for that reason, contact the experienced defense lawyers of Joslyn Law Firm in Columbus. We will fight to protect your future from the criminal charges of a protection order violation, as well as resolve it in any other way possible or necessary.

Call (614) 444-1900 today for your free consultation on what Joslyn Law Firm can do for your alleged violation of protection order case.