Frequently Asked Questions - Restraining Order Waukegan, IL

What is a restraining order and how far-reaching is it in Lake County, Illinois?

A restraining order in Lake County, IL is a civil court order that restricts the contact certain people may have with the "petitioner" (the person requesting the order). The person restricted by the order of protection in Lake County is called the "respondent." A restraining order requires one or more individuals over the age of 18 to refrain from directly or indirectly contacting the petitioner and from threatening, abusing or harassing any member of the petitioner's household. The judge can create various exceptions, or modifications, as conditions of the restraining order. For example, if the petitioner requests, a judge may create a modification of the restraining order that would permit contact between the parties only for purposes of child visitation. A judge can order a number of conditions as part of the restraining order. These conditions include, but are not limited to: ordering a respondent to vacate a residence, pay child support or not to possess firearms. If the petitioner requests that the respondent be prohibited from having firearms, a hearing is required before the court can grant such a request. If the respondent receives notice of the hearing, even if he or she is not present, then the court can issue an order prohibiting the respondent from having any firearms. A restraining order in Lake County, Illinos is entirely separate from any criminal matter.

What if a divorce is involved in the state of Illinois?

If a divorce in Lake County IL is pending, the application for the restraining order in Lake County, IL should be applied for by the petitioner, and evaluated by the judge, in the court in which the divorce is pending.

Why do you suggest I get a restraining order?

Restraining orders in Waukegan and Lake County, Illinois enable law enforcement agencies to intervene at the earliest indications of threatening, harassing or otherwise violent behavior occurs. Unfortunately, isolated, threatening acts, such as walking in front of an ex-spouse's home at two o'clock in the morning, dressed in black and carrying a knife, or walking up to an ex-girlfriend at her job and stating an intent to kill her, are not offenses which individually constitute crimes in the State of Illinois. Therefore, absent a restraining order in Lake County, IL, if someone were to report such conduct to the Lake County police, no legal recourse would be available. However, were such threatening acts to occur in the face of an active restraining order in Lake County Illinois prohibiting all contact, domestic abuse and harassment, then law enforcement officers would be able to make an arrest.

May I request additions to the restraining order in Lake County, Illinois?

Upon request, the judge may make additions to a restraining orde in Lake County, IL. Depending upon the circumstances involved, the judge may stipulate any of the following: Eviction of the respondent from a residence shared by the petitioner. Unless the restraining order specifically calls for an eviction, it is not an eviction notice. If both are listed on a lease or mortgage, the respondent cannot be evicted until the permanent restraining order hearing. An order may be issued for the Police Department to accompany the petitioner to the shared residence to collect emergency belongings. An order may be issued for the respondent to pay child support or maintenance payments to the petitioner if the petitioner and respondent are married and have not filed for divorce. The petitioner, respondent or both may be required to attend counseling, including domestic violence education.

Are there age requirements in the County of Lake County, IL?

Anyone may request a restraining order in Lake County, Illinois if they have been physically hurt or threatened. A parent or guardian must file on behalf of anyone under 18 years of age as long as he or she lives in the same household. Under certain circumstances a restraining order in Waukegan or Lake County, IL may be issued against a juvenile. There are no hard and fast rules regarding restraining orders against juveniles in Lake County and it will be up to a judge to decide if one is needed.

How long does the restraining order remain in effect in Waukegan, IL?

It depends. The duration period of a restraining order in Lake County is usually two years. However, the judge has the discretion to issue a restraining order for as little time or as much time as he or she determines is appropriate. The petitioner can renew the restraining order near the time that the order is scheduled to expire. Please note there is a one-month grace period to renew and if more time than this passes the petitioner will have to start the entire application process over again. A restraining order in Waukegan, IL or Lake County, IL may only be renewed one time. After the one renewal, the petitioner may reapply for a new restraining order.

What are the limitations of restraining orders In Lake County, Illinois?

The most recent studies indicate that filing for restraining orders in Lake County actually decreases violence in the overwhelming majority of cases. Although restraining orders are extremely helpful in curbing many forms of violence and preliminary stalking behavior, they are not bulletproof shields. Therefore, it is EXTREMELY important that when obtaining a restraining order, that a petitioner seek the advice of an advocate regarding safety planning and other resources within the community that will be able to provide assistance, just in case. What happens if the order is violated? If an individual is currently violating a restraining order, the person who is protected by the order may file for contempt of court (civil proceeding), or seek the filing of criminal charges ranging from Invasion of Privacy to major felony charges in Lake County, IL, depending on the severity of the offense..

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