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What Type of Restraining Order Should I File?

Restraining Order

In Wisconsin, there are four (4) different types of restraining orders, and the one you file will depend on the details of your situation. According to the Wisconsin Department of Justice, restraining orders can order someone “not to hurt you, to stay away from you, move out of the house, have no contact with you, or stop harassing you.” With the different types of restraining orders, you can file against your current or ex-spouse, partner, co-parent, family or household members, a loved one’s caretaker, or even a stranger or acquaintance.

The types of restraining orders include:

Domestic Abuse Restraining Orders

You should file a domestic abuse restraining order if your family or household members, co-parent, or current or former spouse or partner subjects you to domestic abuse.

Under Wisconsin Statutes § 813.12(1)(am), domestic abuse may include:

  • Intentionally inflicting pain or injury
  • Sexual assault
  • Threats
  • Stalking
  • Property damage

If someone you live with or have or had a dating relationship with hurts you or makes you feel afraid, a domestic abuse restraining order may be appropriate.

Harassment Restraining Orders

Harassment restraining orders are similar to domestic abuse restraining orders, but they are much broader. Not only can you file against a friend, acquaintance, or stranger, but the conduct that warrants a harassment restraining order also includes any acts meant to harass or intimidate you.

If someone with whom you do not have a domestic relationship strikes, shoves, or makes any other physical contact with you, you can file a harassment restraining order. You can also file a harassment restraining order if you have been sexually assaulted by a stranger or an acquaintance.

Harassment restraining orders may also be appropriate if you are being stalked, threatened, harassed, or intimidated.

Examples of stalking and harassment may include someone showing up at your workplace, entering your property without permission, following you around, trying to gather information about you, contacting you repeatedly, sending unwanted gifts or materials, or saying you’ll “be in trouble” if you do not fulfill their wishes.

Child Abuse Restraining Orders

If someone causes physical injury or emotional damage to your child or a child you know, you can file a restraining order on the child’s behalf. While domestic abuse restraining orders can protect you and your children, there are some situations where a child abuse restraining order may be necessary.

Individual at Risk Restraining Orders

Similarly, elderly individuals or people with physical or mental health conditions may need protection from abuse and neglect. If you are concerned about an elder over 60 or an impaired adult who is experiencing or at risk of experiencing physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, financial exploitation, or neglect, you can file an individual at risk restraining order.

These restraining orders may be useful if someone is being abused or neglected by their caretaker or even suffering unreasonable confinement or restraint in a nursing home.

What Are the Most Common Restraining Orders?

The majority of restraining orders are filed to protect women against a male alleged abuser. As such, the most common restraining orders in Wisconsin are domestic abuse restraining orders and harassment restraining orders.

No one, male or female, should have to suffer abuse or live in fear. If you or someone you love is being stalked, harassed, or harmed by anyone else, please discuss your legal options with the Law Offices of Mark S. Knutson, S.C. Our experienced legal team can help you choose the correct restraining order, file a temporary restraining order in court, and take the required steps toward lasting protection.

Collectively, our attorneys have been practicing family law and helping clients with restraining orders for more than 60 years, and we can help you, too.

All you need to do is call us at (262) 205-0705 or contact us online to schedule your free phone consultation today.