What Is the Longest Time for a Restraining Order in Massachusetts?

Woman looking at calendar in Massachusetts.

In Massachusetts, the maximum duration of a restraining order (209A order) against a family or household member can be permanent, but those are rare. They are usually in place for one year and can be extended annually after that. For harassment prevention orders (258E orders), they can initially last up to a year, but they […]

What Is the Difference Between a No Contact Order and a Restraining Order in Massachusetts?

Man in orange jumpsuit and handcuffs standing in front of Massachusetts judge.

In Massachusetts, a restraining order, often referred to as a “209A Order,” is a court order aimed at preventing domestic violence by restricting an abuser’s actions towards the victim, which may include no contact provisions, staying away from the victim’s home/work, and surrendering firearms. A no-contact order specifically prohibits an individual from contacting another person […]

What is the difference between a 209A and a 258E in Massachusetts?

Woman signing Massachusetts restraining order application.

In Massachusetts, a 209A order is a domestic violence restraining order, designed to protect individuals from abuse by a family or household member. It can impose various restrictions, such as no contact or staying away from the petitioner. A 258E order, on the other hand, is a harassment prevention order for individuals experiencing harassment, defined […]

What Is a Protective Order in Massachusetts?

Woman talking to Massachusetts cop about a protective order.

In Massachusetts, a protective order, commonly referred to as a restraining order, is a legal directive issued by a court to protect individuals from harm or harassment by prohibiting the named person from contacting or coming near you. It’s often used in cases of domestic violence, stalking, or assault. Types include emergency, temporary, and permanent […]

What is a 209A in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts judge on bench considering 209A Order.

A 209A in Massachusetts refers to a protective order under Chapter 209A of the Massachusetts General Laws, aimed at preventing domestic violence. It allows individuals facing abuse from a family or household member to seek court protection. The order can mandate the abuser to stop the abuse, avoid any contact with the victim, and stay […]

What Are the Requirements for 209A in Massachusetts?

Scared woman on phone with man in background drinking beer.

In Massachusetts, a 209A Protective Order requires the petitioner and respondent to have a specific relationship (marriage, cohabitation, family, shared child, or substantial dating relationship). The petitioner must prove the respondent has caused or attempted to cause physical harm, placed the petitioner in fear of imminent serious physical harm, or forced sexual relations through force […]

How Do I File for a Restraining Order in Massachusetts?

Woman filling out restraining order request in Massachusetts.

Determine the Type of Order: Decide if you need a domestic violence restraining order (209A) or a harassment prevention order (258E). Obtain the Forms: Visit your local Massachusetts courthouse or their website to get the necessary forms. Courthouses have Court Service Centers where staff can help. Complete the Forms: Fill out the application forms, providing […]

How Do I File for a Harassment Prevention Order in Massachusetts?

Woman filling out Restraining Order application.

To file for a Harassment Prevention Order in Massachusetts, follow these steps: Go to Your Local District Court: Visit the district court in the area where you live, work, or study. If you’re in immediate danger, any police department can also help you file. Request the Forms: Ask for the forms needed to file for […]

Does a Restraining Order Show Up on a Background Check in Massachusetts?

Criminal background check form on clipboard.

In Massachusetts, a restraining order may appear on a background check, as they are generally considered public records. The visibility of a restraining order on a background check can depend on the thoroughness of the check and the type (civil or criminal) of the restraining order issued. Background checks that include court records will likely […]

Can You Fight a Restraining Order in Massachusetts?

Man challenging restraining order in a Massachusetts court.

Yes, you can fight a restraining order in Massachusetts. The process involves attending the hearing scheduled for the restraining order, where you can present evidence, witness testimony, and your argument against the order’s issuance. It’s crucial to prepare thoroughly, potentially with legal representation, to make a compelling case for why the restraining order should not […]