Every crime in California is defined by a specific code section. Our attorneys explain the law, penalties and best defense strategies for every major crime in California.
Laws » What is the difference between a protective order and a restraining order?
Both are described as a court order that is designed to protect a person from:
by another person – that is specifically named in the order.
Penal Code 273.6 PC is the California statute that makes it a crime for a person to violate the terms or conditions of a restraining/protective order.
A violation of this statute can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the facts of the case.
Fortunately, a variety of legal defenses apply when a defendant is accused of violating a protective order. A skilled California defense lawyer can assert these on your behalf. Three common defenses include:
Generally speaking, a restraining order is the same thing as a protective order under California law. Both are described as a court order that is designed to protect a person from:
by the person named in the order. The exact order will dictate exactly what type of behavior is or is not prohibited but will likely include provisions that the restrained party refrain from any type of contact with the protected individual.
“Contact” generally includes:
There are essentially four types of California protective orders that the courts will issue. These are:
If a person that is the “restrained” person named in a restraining order does not adhere to its terms and conditions, then prosecutors may charge him with violating a protective order under Penal Code 273.6 PC.
A prosecutor must prove three things in order to successfully convict someone of violating a restraining order. These are:
A violation of PC 273.6 is typically charged as a misdemeanor. The offense is punishable by:
In some cases, a violation of a restraining order can lead to felony charges. A felony charge is punishable by:
A person can raise a legal defense if he is charged with violating Penal Code 273.6. A good defense can work to get a charge reduced or even dropped altogether.
Three common legal defenses include:
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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