Domestic violence affects thousands of people across the country. In fact, as many as 202,000 orders of protection were entered into the Domestic Violence Registry in a single year in New York alone. These types of allegations should be taken seriously, so if you are concerned about the safety of you or your children or have been unfairly accused of domestic violence, it is critical to contact an experienced Dutchess County domestic violence lawyer as soon as possible.
Filing a Petition in Family Court
Only certain individuals are permitted to file a petition requesting an order of protection in family court, including those who:
- Are related to the accused by marriage or by blood;
- Have been married to the respondent;
- Have a child with the respondent; or
- Had an intimate relationship with the accused.
Whether a relationship qualifies as intimate is a matter left up to the court, which will take into consideration the following factors before making a decision:
- The nature and type of the relationship;
- The frequency of interaction between the parties; and
- The duration of the relationship.
If a court determines that a relationship qualifies as intimate, it will address the request for the petition itself, which should contain as many details as possible about the abuse, including whether it was verbal, physical, emotional, sexual, or threat-based. By describing when and where each incident occurred, petitioners can give the court a better understanding of the extent and severity of the charges.