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Steps to getting a protective order

A protection order in Illinois acts as a deterrent to help keep people safe from a known assailant. The Illinois General Assembly states that an order of protection can be obtained by someone being abused, neglected or mistreated by a family member, care giver or member of the household. In order to get a protective order, a person must file a petition with the court. If a person already has a related case in court, the petition can be filed as part of that case. For example, if a person is getting divorced and wants an order against the soon-to-be ex-spouse, then it can be filed as part of that case.

The petition must have a sworn statement that the person filing has been abused by the person it is being filed against. Because an order of protection is not a criminal issue, there is not trial by jury option. The hearing will be expedited, though, to help it move through court quickly. A judge will hear testimony and make a ruling on whether to grant the order.

DuPage County offers a checklist to help individuals decide if they meet the minimum requirements for filing for a protective order. The abuse needs to be current, within the last three days, because these orders are designed to stop an immediate threat. In addition, an order will only be awarded is there is a domestic relationship between the person filing and the person it if filed against. Finally, it can only be filed for in DuPage County if the person filing or the person being accused lives in the county or the abuse took place in the county. 

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