What happens at a TPO (temporary protective order) hearing in Las Vegas?

Posted by Neil Shouse | Oct 03, 2019 | 0 Comments

A TPO hearing in Nevada is where a purported victim asks a judge or commissioner to grant a TPO (temporary protective order) against someone else, typically an abusive ex or family member. TPOs usually last 45 days.

What TPOs are in Las Vegas

A TPO is short for temporary protective order against domestic violence. TPOs are short-term restraining orders that forbid the subject of the TPO from having any kind of contact with the alleged victim (and/or the victim's child or pet). TPOs can last up to 45 days.

How to apply for TPOs in Las Vegas

People who are fearing for their safety in Las Vegas are advised to contact a Nevada family law attorney experienced in how to get TPOs. The attorney can take care of all of the paperwork and guide the victims through the next steps.

Otherwise, victims can apply for a TPO at the Family Violence Intervention Office at 601 N. Pecos Rd., Las Vegas, NV, 89101. The office phone number is (702) 455-3400.

After the application for a TPO is filed, the court will quickly make one of three decisions:

  1. Deny the application and grant no hearing (this is rare);
  2. Accept the application without a hearing and immediately grant a TPO (usually for 45 days). The court will then hold a hearing in a few weeks in order to determine whether to grant an extended protective order; or
  3. Hold a hearing very soon to determine whether to grant a TPO.

The ideal situation for the victim is for the judge to grant a TPO without holding a hearing first. Note that the court has no obligation to notify the alleged abuser that a TPO is out against him/her.

What happens at a TPO hearing in Las Vegas?

A TPO hearing is like a mini-trial where the judge or commissioner listens to evidence and determines whether to grant a temporary restraining order. Depending on the case, the alleged abuser may be permitted to attend the TPO hearing and present his/her side of the case.

At the hearing, the victim or his/her attorney will present evidence to the judge claiming that the victim is fearing for his/her safety. Typical evidence includes:

  • threatening voicemails, texts, or emails from the alleged abuser
  • witnesses who can testify about the alleged abuser's threats and actions
  • police reports that document the alleged abuser's behavior
  • any videotape or recordings of the alleged abuser's behavior
  • medical records that show the victim's past injuries from the alleged abuser
  • bruises and other injuries the victim currently has

If the judge allows the alleged abuser to be present, he/she or his/her attorney may argue against the TPO. Typical arguments is that the alleged victim is lying out of anger or revenge or to gain the upper hand in a child-custody battle.

Most TPO hearing last less than an hour. After considering the evidence, the judge or commissioner will then decide whether to grant the TPO.

Where do TPO hearings occur in Las Vegas?

TPO hearings occur in a courtroom at Las Vegas Family Court, located at 601 N. Pecos Road., Las Vegas, NV, 89101.

Can TPOs be extended in Las Vegas?

TPOs can be replaced by extended protective orders after the TPO expires. But for this to happen, the judge must hold a hearing where the alleged abuser is given the opportunity to defend him/herself.

Learn about the penalties for violating a restraining order in Nevada (NRS 33.100).


About the Author

Neil Shouse

A former Los Angeles prosecutor, attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT). He has been featured on CNN, Good Morning America, Dr Phil, Court TV, The Today Show and Court TV. Mr Shouse has been recognized by the National Trial Lawyers as one of the Top 100 Criminal and Top 100 Civil Attorneys.


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