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Know the Laws: South Carolina

UPDATED November 8, 2016

Restraining Orders Against Stalking or Harassment

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A restraining order against stalking or harassment is a civil order that can be issued against anyone who is harassing or stalking you. 

The court process

back to topHow do I apply for a restraining order against stalking or harassment?

To get a restraining order against stalking or harassment, you will have to file in Magistrate's Court in the county where:

  • the defendant currently lives; or
  • the harassment or stalking occurred; or
  • you live but ONLY if the defendant lives out of state or cannot be found.*
Go here to find a Magistrate's Court.

* S.C. Code § 16-3-1750(B)

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back to topDo I have to pay to file for a restraining order?

Perhaps.  You will not be charged a fee for filing a complaint and motion for a restraining order.  However, the court  will order the fee to be paid by the person who loses the case -- in other words, if the judge grants you the restraining order, the defendant will have to pay the fee.  If the judge decides that you did not prove your case and you do not get the order, you will have to pay the filing fee.*

* S.C. Code § 16-3-1750(D)

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back to topCan the restraining order be extended before it expires?

Possibly.  You can file a motion (court papers) to ask that the final restraining order be extended for "good cause."  The defendant will have the chance to present evidence at a hearing within thirty days of the expiration date of the order to tell the judge why the order should not be extended.  Then the judge will decide whether to extend it or not.*

* S.C. Code § 16-3-1780(B)

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