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What is a No Contact Order?

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A no contact order is often issued as the terms of a person's release from jail on bond after a violent crime has been committed. It commonly lasts for the duration of the criminal case's proceedings. It should not be confused with a restraining order, which consists entirely in the realm of the civil court system. If you are a victim of violence or rape and/or you have children who need to be kept away from a certain individual, you may be able to receive a no contact order. In the filings, you will need to demonstrate grounds for this request to the judge.

No Contact Order Facts

  • The terms of the no contact order often include no physical contact, writing, phone calls or third-party contact.
  • The no contact order commonly lasts until the end of the case, or it may be lifted if the victim requests it. A specific expiration date on the no contact order is usually determined at sentencing, and it can often be part of a sentence.
  • The order can extend to the victim's children as well as the victim.
  • No contact orders are often issued in separations or divorces. They also are commonly issued in domestic violence and rape cases.
  • It is possible for a third party to file for a no contact order between two other people; this is common in cases involving children.
  • When the judge issues a no contact order, he or she must indicate the minimum distance apart that the no contact parties must be. This action, which varies by state, is usually initiated when a victim comes forth to file a petition for the order.

Considerations

  • Depending on the state, violating a no contact order can be a misdemeanor, felony or contempt of court. The violation can lead to jail time.
  • The person who received the no contact order can appeal the decision.
  • No contact orders are rarely permanent, but the duration entirely depends on what the judge considers to be in the best interest of the person the order is meant to protect. 
  • A no contact order can only be filed while a criminal or juvenile case is under way. 
  • It is common for a no contact order to be automatically issued following a violent act; a no contact order can also be the condition of a probation.

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