How do I ask for a restraining order in a family law motion?

1. Decide which motion you need to bring

A is where you ask a judge to decide specific issues before a trial. If you're making the motion, you're called the . Your partner is called the .

There are Family Law Rules that tell you what is needed at every step in a court case. Rule 14: Motions for temporary orders tells you what you need to do to bring a motion.

There are three ways to get a by motion.

The kind of motion you use does not affect the conditions your restraining order can have. And all restraining orders have criminal consequences if they are not followed. This means if a person does not follow the conditions in a restraining order, the police can arrest them, charge them with a crime, and hold them for a .

But the process and time that it takes to get a restraining order depends on the kind of motion you use.

Regular motion

It can take several months to get a restraining order. This is because your court case has to follow certain steps before you can bring a regular motion. You usually must have a before you can ask the court for a restraining order.

But, if you can't wait to have a case conference, there are two other types of motions that you can bring in very few situations if you need a  quickly.

Urgent motion with notice

An urgent motion with notice allows you to skip some steps like the case conference, so that you can ask for a restraining order right away.  You must show the court that you or your children are in danger of being hurt in the time that it would take to bring a regular motion. But you must still the other person with your documents. And they will have a chance to respond.

At your hearing, if the court doesn't think your motion was urgent, you might have to pay the other person's court costs. This can include their court filing fees and lawyer's fees.

Urgent motion without notice

An ex parte or urgent motion without notice, sometimes called an emergency motion, also allows you to skip some steps like the case conference. And you don't have to serve the other person with your documents until the restraining order is in effect.

You must show the court that telling the other person about your request for a restraining order would cause immediate and serious risk to your safety or the safety of your children.

These orders usually last less than 14 days. At the next court date, the court will hear from both of you. If the court thinks you could have told the other person about your motion by giving them notice or that you did not provide all the relevant information, you might have to pay the other person's court costs. This can include their court filing fees and lawyer's fees.

Get help right away

If you need a restraining order right away, go to your nearest family court and ask for help from the or lawyer. You might also be able to get help from a Family Court Support Worker.

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