Skilled Annapolis Criminal Defense Attorney Upholding Your Rights
Helping Maryland clients facing charges of violating a restraining order
Maryland courts can issue protective orders, more commonly called restraining orders, in domestic and civil cases. The orders normally require that the person subject to the order stop specific conduct, including contacting or harassing someone such as a spouse or a child. A family restraining order often limits access to the family home and child visitation.
My name is Gill Andrew Cochran, and I understand the complexities of restraining orders. Most restraining orders begin as temporary and are obtained by the person claiming abuse without the presence of the respondent, or the person being told to stop the contact. A permanent restraining order may be granted but only after a formal hearing before a judge. The respondent does have the right to appear at the hearing and contest the accusations. An experienced Annapolis restraining order attorney at Drew Cochran, Attorney at Law helps respondents fight restraining orders.
Explaining restraining orders in Maryland
Spouses often seek a restraining order when there are allegations of physical abuse, sexual abuse, stalking, or harassment. However, restraining orders are not confined to domestic matters. Petitioners sometimes seek them to prevent someone from harassing a non-family member, such as in a celebrity stalking case. Protective orders can also be sought to stop a person for going into a business or professional service locations.
Your rights in a permanent restraining order hearing include:
- Notification of the temporary restraining order
- The right to request a hearing to contest the permanent restraining order
- The right to defend yourself
- The right to use legal counsel of your own choosing
Respondents are not entitled to free appointed counsel. This is why it is essential to hire an experienced Annapolis criminal defense lawyer. I will explain the consequences for failing to obey a temporary or permanent restraining order, including imprisonment, being charged with a crime, and other risks. The restraining order will be public record and show up on background checks which can endanger your ability to work and move into an apartment. I also counsel respondents that they should obey the temporary restraining order until the hearing. Otherwise the violation of the temporary order will be used against you in the formal hearing.
I will help you prepare for the hearing by reviewing the allegations, helping your gather essential evidence such as letters and emails, and speaking to witnesses who can help you in your defense. I will also explain some of the things you need to be careful about, such as confronting family members and witnesses who might testify against you. If the order applies to your children, I will explain that you should not attempt to get around the order by seeing the children at school or away from their home.
Speak with an experienced defense attorney about Maryland protective orders
Defending against a protective order can be complex. Sometimes the person asserting abuse is trying to get you on record so they can use your statements against you in family law court. They may even seek to have your statements used as the basis for a criminal charge. As someone who has been helping the accused for nearly two decades, I have the experience to balance your interests and risks. Please call Drew Cochran, Attorney at Law at 410-777-8103 or fill out my contact form as soon as you get the temporary order.
And remember: Keep Calm – and Call Drew.