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Abuse is broadly defined and not limited to physical abuse. Initially, the court has the authority to issue a temporary restraining order until the first court hearing is held (including to make temporary child custody, visitation, child support, spousal support, and property control issues), which must occur within a few weeks. Once the temporary restraining order is issued, the restrained party must surrender their firearms and comply with the contact, conduct, stay-away, custody, visitation, and other orders, even if the allegations are false. The court order must be respected or the restrained party may risk being arrested. If the court finds that restrained party committed abuse against the protected party, the court has the authority to issue a restraining order for up to five years.

If there is evidence that the allegations are false, or there is no evidence of abuse, there are legal procedures that can be used to ask the court to vacate or cancel the orders (including exemptions to the firearms ban when firearms are required for work purposes). Sometimes temporary restraining orders are obtained based on false allegations. California law provides for the assessment of penalties, and possibly the loss of child custody, against a parent that knowingly makes false allegations of abuse.

If you have been served with a domestic violence restraining order, or need the protection of one, do not hesitate and immediately contact Singer & Associates to set up a consultation to better understand your situation.

Each case has unique facts and circumstances and this area of law is always changing. Readers are encouraged to seek independent legal advice regarding their individual situation and legal issues. Contact the attorney's of Singer & Associate Law Office to set up a consultation.