New York Orders of Protection and Family Offense “Crimes”

In order for you or your attorney to secure an order of protection in on of New York’s Family Courts, you must first allege in your petition to the judge that the respondent (this is the equivalent of a defendant in a criminal prosecution) committed a “family offense.” Again, as noted in Crotty Saland PC’s general page for New York City and New York State Family Court orders of protection, even if the party you seek protection from with a restraining order committed a family offense, you and that other person must have an intimate relationship or be of the same family (siblings, in-laws, parents, cousins, etc.). Even if you are not technically married, but merely have a child in common, this forms a sufficient basis for your Family Court lawyer or order of protection attorney to secure a restraining order.

New York Family Court Act 812: The “Crimes”

Certain crimes found in the New York Penal Law are also enumerated as family offenses. For example, while Trespassing or Criminal Possession of a Stolen Property may be a crime, even if it was committed by a wife against a husband, there has not been a violation of the Family Court Act. New York Family Court Act 812 establishes specific crimes or family court offenses. Some of the more common crimes or offenses are as follows:

Because many of people have little or no experience with either the criminal law or family law, the following will be helpful. If your boyfriend of three months punched you and gives you a black eye, substantial pain and swelling, he has likely committed Assault in the Third Degree. If your ex-wife continuously calls you, sends you unwanted texts and threatening emails, she may have committed the crime of Second Degree Aggravated Harassment. If your uncle took your I-phone from you and smashed it on the ground, he has perpetrated the crime of Criminal Mischief in the Fourth or Third Degree. Only limited hypotheticals, these offenses as well as others including any degree of Identity Theft, Stalking or numerous sexual related crimes such as Forcible Touching, satisfy the statutory requirements of NY Family Court Act 812. Also, keep in mind that if a party has committed a family offense, you may have the grounds to go to the police to file a criminal complaint.

Because of the nature of the Family Court, the overwhelming number of people who walk through each court’s respective doors on any given day, and the complexity of how you should draft your petition before presenting to a judge, it is critically important that you seek assistance from an experienced Family Court order of protection attorney. You do not want a judge to deny your request because you failed to put enough or the proper information in the petition. Certainly, you do not want to give an abuser, harasser or violent person the ability to continue their frightening ways. At the same time, allowing a petitioner to make false or exaggerated claims against you cannot be ignored. The consequences are too great.

Contact the New York order of protection attorneys today and let experience and advocacy work for you.

Call the New York order of protection lawyers and former New York City prosecutors at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online to aid you in securing a restraining order or to defend you against a wrongful granting of an order of protection.

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