Restraining Orders In Colorado
Boulder Restraining Orders
Many people are familiar with the term restraining order–from TV or movies or in the news. Colorado’s version of the “restraining order” is a civil protection order.
Temporary Civil Protection Order
To obtain a civil protection order against someone in Colorado you must first apply for a Temporary Civil Protection Order which is governed under C.R.S. § 13-14-100.2, et seq. As the Colorado state legislature made apparent in their Legislative Declaration regarding Protection Orders:
The general assembly hereby finds that the issuance and enforcement of protection orders are of paramount importance in the state of Colorado because protection orders promote safety, reduce violence and other types of abuse, and prevent serious harm and death. In order to improve the public’s access to protection orders and to ensure careful judicial consideration of requests and effective law enforcement, there shall be two processes for obtaining protection orders within the state of Colorado, a simplified civil process and a mandatory criminal process.
The focus of this post is on “simplified civil process.” A Temporary or Permanent Civil Protection Order can be issued by just about any Colorado court against an adult or juvenile over the age of 10. The circumstances of its issuance include:
- To prevent assaults and threatened bodily harm;
- To prevent domestic abuse;
- To prevent emotional abuse of the elderly or of an at-risk adult;
- To prevent sexual assault or abuse; and
- To prevent stalking.
For the simplified Civil Protection Order, a person need not show that criminal charges have been reported or filed.
A Temporary Civil Protection Order can be issued if the judge finds finds that an “imminent danger” exists to the life or health of the person(s) or business entity (yes, businesses can also seek Civil Protection Orders) seeking protection. In making this determination as to imminent danger, the court should “consider all relevant evidence concerning the safety and protection of the persons seeking the protection order.” If the court believes the requesting person(s) or business entity have demonstrated that imminent danger exists, the court will issue a Temporary Civil Protection Order which will request that the restrained person appear in court for a hearing to show cause as to why the Temporary Civil Protection Order should not be made permanent against him or her.
Permanent Civil Protection Order
At the Permanent Civil Protection Order hearing, the judge will examine all evidence, which will typically include witness testimony. If the judge determines that, the restrained person has committed the acts giving rise to the Temporary Protection Order and, that unless restrained, “will continue to commit such acts or acts designed to intimidate or retaliate against the protected person,” the judge will order that the Temporary Civil Protection Order be made permanent. At the Permanent Civil Protection Order hearing, the person seeking protection need not show “imminent danger.”
If the restrained person violates the Permanent Civil Protection Order, it is a criminal offense or constitutes contempt of court.
Boulder Civil Attorneys of LaszloLaw
The Boulder Civil Attorneys of LaszloLaw represent and counsel individuals and businesses on a variety of legal needs, including risk management, litigation, and business formation. Contact one of our Boulder attorneys today.