To protect yourself and your family, you may need to seek a restraining order on your spouse or your former partner. It is worth highlighting the fact that there are two types of restraining orders that might be granted in a Georgia divorce case: Temporary Protective Orders (TPO) and Mutual Restraining Orders (MRO).
At Mitchell & Crunk, our Commerce, GA divorce lawyers are often asked about both of these types of restraining orders. We want to make sure that everyone has the tools and information they need to protect themselves. Here, we explain what all divorcing couples need to know about TPOs and MROs.
What is a Mutual Restraining Order (MRO)?
In Georgia, a mutual restraining order (MRO) is automatically applied in divorce cases, child custody disputes, and other types of domestic actions. You do not need to apply for an MRO as it goes into effect when you file your case. An MRO contains standardized, boilerplate language, and its purpose is, essentially, to maintain the status quo.
In practice, an MRO will prohibit parents from leaving the state of Georgia with their children, it will stop the parties from canceling each other’s insurance coverage, and it will prevent each party from wasting or transferring away marital assets. In effect, the MRO is designed to keep things in the same place, until the family law case can be resolved. While MROs are standard, they are still serious. If you or your former partner violates the terms of an MRO, there could be major legal trouble.
What is a Temporary Protective Order (TPO)?
A temporary protective order (TPO) is far different than a mutual restraining order. A TPO
can be issued by a Georgia family law judge in cases where domestic violence, stalking, or serious safety threats have occurred. To obtain a TPO, a person will need to go before a judge. At the first stage of the process, a TPO can be sought without the other party present. You do not have to notify a person that you are seeking a temporary protective order against them.
At the initial hearing, a TPO can be granted on a short-term basis. Soon after, a full hearing will be scheduled in which the other party will have an opportunity to respond. If granted, a temporary protective order gives Georgia authorities wide latitude to protect the victim. In fact, Georgia law enforcement authorities can even remove the offender from their home, and prevent them from contacting their children. The Georgia Superior Court Clerks’ Cooperative Authority provides the forms to apply for a family violence/protective order on its website. If you are asking “can I get a divorce restraining order?”, please seek guidance from an experienced attorney.
Contact Our Georgia Divorce Attorneys Today
At Mitchell & Crunk, our Georgia family law lawyers have extensive experience with divorce restraining orders. For immediate help with your case, please contact our law firm today for a free, fully confidential consultation. We have offices in Commerce and Winder, and we serve clients throughout the region, including in Pendergrass, Maysville, Apple Valley, Auburn, and Jefferson.