Sometimes immediate steps are necessary to protect parties or force action. There are several types of injunctions used by the courts.

Injunction

An injunction is a court decision commanding or preventing a specific act. It may may protect someone from violence, as in cases of domestic abuse.

Courts grant injunctions can be temporary, pending a consideration of the issue later at trial, or permanent as the result of a trial.

Domestic violence injunctions

These are injunctions involving persons who are family or household members, such as spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage and any person who is or was residing within a single dwelling with the petitioner, such as cohabitation.  The petitioner must plead and prove that he or she has been the victim of:

  • any assault - aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault
  • sexual battery,
  • stalking, or aggravated stalking,
  • kidnapping, false imprisonment or
  • any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family household member by another.

Injunctions against repeat violence

These injunctions involve persons who are not in a “domestic relationship.” The petitioner must plead and prove that he or she has been the victim of two incidents of:

  • any assault - aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault
  • sexual battery,
  • stalking, or aggravated stalking,
  • kidnapping, false imprisonment or
  • any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family household member by another.

One of the incidents of violence, or stalking must have occurred within six months of the filing of the petition and be directed against the petitioner or the petitioner’s immediate family member.

Injunctions against dating violence

Individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature can also ask for an injunction. The petitioner must be a victim of dating violence or have a reasonable belief that violence is imminent. No actual acts of violence must occur prior to filing. The petitioner must also show that the relationship and ongoing interaction existed within the past six months and was characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties.

Injunctions against sexual violence

Victims of sexual violence, or the parent or legal guardian of a minor child living at home who is the victim of an act of sexual violence, can file for an injunction. The petitioner must have reported the incident to law enforcement and be cooperating in any criminal proceeding against the respondent; or, if the respondent was sentenced to a term of imprisonment for the act of sexual violence, the sentence must have been expired, or be due to expire within 90 days.