Protective Orders are governed by the Cohabitant Abuse Act under Utah Code Annotated section 78B-7-101 et seq., UCCP 77-36-1.1, and UCC 76-5-108.
Any victim of past or potential future violence or abuse by a current or past “co-habitant” may request a protective order from the district court. “Co-habitant” really means that you have either lived with that person or that you are related by blood, marriage, or through a child out of wedlock.
A protective order is only appropriate when there is fear of physical harm to a person. If harassment is the main concern, then a civil injunction (restraining order) is more appropriate.
Once a protective order is entered by a Judge the order stays in place indefinitely until one party moves to dismiss/vacate the order. The victim cannot consent to contact while the order is in place.
Protective orders are enforceable in other states under the Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution and under Utah’s Uniform Interstate Enforcement of Domestic Violence Protection Orders Act. However, the protective order should be “registered” in that state by filing a certified copy of that order in the district court.
***Caution***A protective order will affect the civil rights of the accused and should not be taken lightly.
The accused’s right to carry or own a firearm will be affected under State and Federal law, and this could be detrimental to certain professions and to those who hunt. Do not go to court alone. Simply telling “your side” of the story will not prevent entry of the order. You need legal representation.
A violation of a protective order is generally a Class A Misdemeanor. However, subsequent violations can result in enhancement under U.C.A. 77-36-1.1. A subsequent conviction becomes a 3rd Degree Felony if the domestic violence offense is committed within five years of conviction, or if the person is convicted of the domestic violence offense within five years after the person is convicted of a qualifying domestic violence offense.
For further information please contact Greg S. Law. for a free initial consult.
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