Mastanduno Law Group wants to help protect our community from the violent elements that pervade it, but while we can’t stop crime, we can help you secure the protection of law enforcement. Domestic matters can get abusive and beyond control quickly, especially when there is change going on beyond anyone’s control. These are delicate matters, but you have the right to feel safe in your home and your daily life. If you feel afraid and want to take steps to protect yourself, we at Mastanduno Law Group will listen to your needs and counsel you on the appropriate legal actions to take.

Depending on the degree of risk in the situation, do not hesitate to get the police involved. A simple call to the non-emergency police in your local county is a very calm way to get your concerns addressed and have the local police outline some options for you. If you are ready to file a restraining order, e-forms are available to start the process immediately in your local county (see link at the bottom for Multnomah county as an example). Forms for one county will be roughly the same for other counties, with the exception of the name of the county at the top.

There are different types of forms for specific situations, and different kinds of restraining orders as well. For example, in Oregon we have three basic restraining orders. First, there are Family Abuse Prevention Act (FAPA) restraining orders which focus on more intimate relationships. These include abuse that takes place between family members, household members, and people who share a sexual relationship at some point. The abuse must take place within 180 days of filing for the restraining order. Second are restraining orders under the Elderly Persons and Persons with Disabilities Abuse Prevention Act, but can be more easily referred to as Elder Abuse or Disabled Abuse restraining orders. These are designed to protect people over the age of 65, or people with disabilities. The events concerning these orders must also have taken place within 180 days of filing. Lastly, there are Stalking Protective Orders which protect people who are subject to stalking by another. Stalking is generally engaging in unwanted contact which has been repeated over time, and can include intentionally alarming or coercing as well.

You usually have to be at least 18 to file a restraining order. If you are younger, a guardian is required. An attorney can provide further information during your consultation.

Resources:

Multnomah county restraining order forms http://www.courts.oregon.gov/Multnomah/General_Info/Family/pages/form.aspx

Additional crisis contact numbers

    • National Sexual Assault Hotline: (800) 656-HOPE
    • National Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) 799-7233
    • Nat’l Center for Victims of Crime Hotline: (800) FYI-CALL
    • Portland Women’s Crisis Line: (800) 235-5333 (for statewide help, and for a referral to a local crisis program)