If you have been accused of domestic violence, then you need to take the situation very seriously.
A domestic violence protective order (50B) can have a devastating impact on your life and can result in a request for temporary custody of your children, loss of employment, and even jail time in certain circumstances.
In this blog post, we will discuss the basics of a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order in Shelby NC.
We will answer some common questions, such as what is a 50B protection order? What is a DVPO? What are the grounds for issuance? And what are the penalties for violating a 50B order?
What is Domestic Violence?
The definition of domestic violence can vary from state to state, but in general, it refers to any type of physical or emotional abuse that occurs between family members or intimate partners or people who live together.
Some common examples of domestic violence include:
- Physical assault or battery
- Sexual assault or rape
- Emotional abuse
- Economic abuse
- Criminal Trespassing
What is a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order?
A 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order is a court order that can be issued to protect victims of domestic violence.
The order may prohibit the person accused of DV from having any contact with the alleged victim. Lawyers in Shelby NC may refer to that as a “no-contact order.”
A 50B DVPO (Domestic Violence Protective Order) may also include other restrictions, such as prohibiting the person accused of wrongdoing from coming within a certain distance of the victim’s home or workplace.
What Are the Grounds for Issuance?
A 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order can be issued if the court finds an instance or instances of domestic violence have occurred or that the person accused of DV attempted to cause bodily harm or injury.
The Court may consider whether there is a danger of further abuse, assaults, battery, or continued instances of domestic violence.
The order will typically be issued to protect the alleged victim, but in some cases, it can be issued to protect children too. A Complaint for a Domestic Violence Protective Order under N.C.G.S. may therefore be brought on behalf of a minor child or children for their best interests and well-being.
What Are the Penalties for Violating a 50B Order?
Violating a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order is a criminal offense in North Carolina. If you’re accused of violating a 50B Order in Shelby NC, an Order for Arrest may be issued.
The penalty for violating an order depends on the nature and circumstances of the offense. To be clear, it is classified as a Class A1 misdemeanor. It can result in jail time.
It is important to note that violating a 50B Order is also a violation of the restraining order.
If you are accused of violating a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order, it is crucial to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
A domestic violence case may also involve criminal allegations and therefore result in an arrest for criminal charges for physical violence, such as:
- Damage to Personal Property
- Assault on a Female
- Simple Assault
- Assault with a Deadly Weapon
- Felony Strangulation
Domestic Violence Ex Parte Order – What is it?
“Ex Parte” domestic violence protective orders may award temporary custody of children and possession of cars, housing, and residences. Following a civil court hearing in Cleveland County District Court, the ex parte domestic violence protective order DVPO may be extended up to one year.
A 50B is a type of restraining order. While legal representation is not required, we think it’s a good idea to retain legal services if you are accused of domestic violence.
Once a temporary, ex parte order is put in place, a court date is set. Court officials ordinary set the hearing date within ten (10) days of the complaint.
It’s important to understand the court date for the DVPO is often different from the court hearing associated with criminal charges.
What Does Imminent Serious Bodily Injury Mean?
One of the grounds for issuance of a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order is if the court finds that the person accused of domestic violence attempted to cause bodily harm or imminent serious bodily injury.
What this means is that an alleged victim does not have to show any physical evidence of abuse. All they need to show is that the accused made an attempt to cause bodily harm or bodily injury.
This may be shown by the testimony of the alleged victim, witnesses, police reports, medical records, and photographs. An ex parte temporary protective order in Shelby is often accompanied by an affidavit that sets forth whether the “domestic violence” is related to a marriage, current or former spouses, intimate relationship, or dating relationship.
In some cases, a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order can be issued even if the person accused denies any wrongdoing, to prevent in the future the following acts against current or former household members:
- Substantial emotional distress
- Continued Harassment
- Bodily Injury
- Sexual Abuse
- Domestic Abuse
- Abuse against a Minor Child or Minor Children
- New acts of violence against the alleged “aggrieved party”
A 50B Order may be issued in same-sex marriages and relationships. North Carolina law no longer requires opposite sex allegations or otherwise precludes a filing with the clerk’s office that alleged the parties in the relationship are the opposite sex.
Domestic Violence in Divorce, Separation or After Divorce
Ex parte temporary domestic violence protection orders, assuming the Court finds incidents of DV, may be extended.
That means a more permanent restraining order may be put in place such that it could affect an action for divorce in North Carolina, with related issues involving child custody of a minor child or children, visitation, and child support.
It is also important to know that a domestic violence protective order (which is a type of restraining order) may be filed in cases where the parties are not married, have never been married, but have some sort of dating relationship.
Parties who do not reside together or have a personal relationship that involves children in common, dating, etc., may be subject to a different type of restraining order in North Carolina referred to a a “50C – Civil No Contact Order.”
If you are the subject of a 50B Domestic Violence Protective Order in Shelby NC, it is important to understand your rights and what steps to take next.
How Does a Domestic Violence Charge Impact Child Custody?
If you are the subject of a domestic violence protective order, it may impact child custody when found to be appropriate by the District Court Judge assigned to hear (decide) the matter.
A domestic violence protective order may have an impact on child custody proceedings in North Carolina. Restraining Orders in family court can affect visitation rights, prohibit a new act of domestic abuse, and even order the payment of attorney’s fees for the aggrieved party in certain circumstances.
The NC Family Laws also allow, in certain circumstances, either party to request payment of attorneys fees. That means if a 50B was issued against you if bad faith, including those based on an ex parte hearing or temporary restraining order, the Court (the Judge) may consider whether the party who brings the DVPO should be responsible for your legal fees.
Each case is different and unique. One should NOT assume Courts automatically and/or in every instance award attorney’s fees. Consult with an experienced lawyer in Lincolnton NC or Shelby NC if you have questions.
Criminal Defense and Family Law Attorneys in Shelby NC
Our law firm helps people with a wide range of different legal issues and problems in Shelby.
Clearly, not every divorce involves allegations of domestic violence. But, when it happens, our law firm has experienced lawyers who can help with crossover legal issues that may involve child custody, visitation, separation, divorce, and criminal charges.
We encourage you to call now to schedule a confidential consultation if you have a family law issue in Lincolnton NC.
A lifelong resident of Shelby, North Carolina, David Teddy was raised with a strong desire to help the people of the community he grew up in. It was this desire to help others along with his appreciation of the art of debate that first spurred his drive to practice law.