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Understanding Protection Orders in Washington

Protection orders are issued by the court to prohibit one party from harming or having any kind of contact with the “petitioner” or “victim.” 

In many cases, protection orders are placed to prevent instances of continued or threatened assault, harassment, and/or domestic violence. Violating these orders could lead to criminal prosecution.

Protection orders in Washington State

Washington State law allows you to seek protection from someone whose behavior is abusive, exploitative, or threatening. Protection orders are civil orders. This means you do not need to seek an arrest, criminal court complaint, or domestic violence conviction to request an order of protection against another party. 

If you or someone you know is feeling unsafe and threatened, It is crucial to know your rights and the legal protections available to you. 

At Feldman & Lee PS, we offer strategic support for anyone who is experiencing assault, stalking, bodily injury, physical harm, or who fears impending physical harm or bodily injury by another party. 

Our attorneys in Kent, Everett, and Lynnwood will help you select and obtain the right protection order, taking into account both your immediate and future needs. 

Types of protection orders in Washington State

Domestic Violence Protection Orders

These may be obtained by a person who fears imminent harm or has experienced physical harm, sexual assault, or stalking from an intimate partner or family or household member.

The order can stay active on a permanent or temporary basis. The court will decide the duration of the order according to the respondent’s level of risk. Temporary orders may be renewed or extended.

Civil Anti-Harassment Orders

These may be filed by a person who has been “seriously annoyed, alarmed, or harassed by conduct which serves no lawful or legitimate purpose and would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress.” 

Sexual Assault Protection Orders

This order is intended to protect victims of sexual assault, including a single incident. 

Petitioners aged 16 years old and below need a parent or guardian to file on their behalf. A third party may also petition on behalf of a vulnerable adult who is unable to file because of health, age, or disability.

Stalking Protection Orders

Stalking conduct involves unwanted and repeated surveillance which may cause any reasonable person to fear for their life and/or property. Violation of a stalking protection order may include mandatory arrest, possible criminal charges, or contempt. 

Extreme Risk Protection Orders (Firearm Removal)

These may be filed by a family member or law enforcement against a person who poses a risk of violence to themselves or others by having access to a firearm. Police may temporarily remove firearms from ERPO respondents and prevent them from purchasing or receiving new ones for the duration of the order.

No Contact Orders

A no-contact order must be filed as part of a criminal action. It may be issued as a condition of release following an arrest for domestic violence. No-contact orders may be filed regardless of whether the involved parties have children or live under the same roof.

Get effective legal counsel 

Pursuing a restraining order can be challenging, especially if you have faced ongoing emotional or physical abuse. But choosing to take action and fight for your safety can be the best thing you can do for yourself, your children, and others around you.

If you need a restraining order, let Feldman & Lee PS assist you throughout the legal process. 

We will help you understand your options and plan your next step. Our experienced restraining order attorneys follow a personalized and empathic approach to ensure your rights and best interests are protected. 

Book a consultation with our lawyers and secure the legal protection you need.

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