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Know the Laws: North Carolina

UPDATED August 17, 2016

Civil No-Contact Orders for Victims of Registered Sex Offenders ("50D orders")

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A civil no-contact order for victims of registered sex offenders (“50D order”), provides life-long protection from an abuser who was convicted of a crime that requires registration on the sex offender registry.

Basic info

back to topWhat is a civil no-contact order for victims of registered sex offenders?

A civil no-contact order for victims of registered sex offenders (also known as a “50D order”), is a life-long court order that aims to protect you from an abuser who was convicted of a crime that requires registration on the sex offender registry.*

* NCGS § 50D-1

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back to topWho can get a civil no-contact order for victims of registered sex offenders?

If you are the victim of a sex offense (or certain other non-sexual offenses) that occurred in North Carolina or if you are the victim of a substantially similar crime in another state, you may be eligible for a 50D civil no-contact order if:

  • The abuser was convicted of the offense; and
  • The criminal offense requires registration on the sex offender registry.*

You may also be able to file on behalf of a minor child or an incompetent adult who is a victim of registerable sex offense.**

* NCGS §§ 50D-2(a)(1); 14-208.6(4)(b)
** NCGS § 50D-2(a)(2),(3)

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back to topWhat crimes could qualify me for a 50D civil no-contact order?

Most of the crimes that require registration are sexually violent crimes, including forcible rape of an adult or child, statutory rape, sexual battery, and sexual exploitation of a minor.  Other crimes are sexual in nature, but not necessarily violent, such as felony peeping.  Certain non-sexual offenses against a minor also require registration, including kidnapping, felonious restraint and abducting a child (if the offender is not the minor’s parent).*  You can read more about which crimes require registration by reading the language of the law NCGS § 14-208.6 on our NC Statutes page or by looking at the chart created by the University of North Carolina School of Government

Note: You may also be eligible for a 50D order if the abuser was convicted in another state or in federal court of an offense that is significantly similar to the registerable offenses in North Carolina or if the offense requires registration in the state where the abuser was convicted.**

* NCGS § 14-208.6(4)(a),(5)
** NCGS § 14-208.6(4)(b),(c)

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back to topHow long does a civil no-contact order for victims of registered sex offenders last?

The order is permanent and can last forever.*

* NCGS § 50D-1

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Getting the order

back to topWhat do I have to prove for the judge to grant me a civil no-contact order?

If the judge finds the following is true, s/he can issue a civil no-contact order:

  • The abuser was convicted of committing a sex offense against you;
  • You did not seek a permanent no-contact order in criminal court under NCGS § 15A-1340.50;
  • There are reasonable grounds for you to fear that the abuser will contact you in the future; and
  • The abuser received notice of the case, and either
    • answered the complaint and notice of the hearing was given, or
    • failed to respond to the complaint and is in default.*

* NCGS § 50D-5(a)

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back to topHow can a civil no-contact order help me?

A civil no-contact order can order that the abuser not:

  • threaten, visit, assault, molest, or otherwise interfere with you;
  • follow you, including at your workplace;
  • harass you;
  • abuse or injure you;
  • contact you by telephone, written communication, or electronic means;
  • enter or remain present at your residence, school, place of employment, or other specified places at times when you are present;
  • The judge can also order anything else s/he finds necessary and appropriate.*

* NCGS § 50D-5(b)

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back to topHow is a 50D civil no-contact different than a 50C civil no-contact order or a 50B domestic violence protective order?

All three orders, 50D, 50C and 50B, can protect victims of sexual assault.  However, 50D no-contact orders are permanent, whereas 50C and 50B orders must be renewed in person each time the order expires.*  Additionally, another important difference is that victims of sexual assault are only eligible for a 50D civil no-contact order if the offender was convicted and the offense requires registration on the sex-offender registry.**  You can read more about 50C orders on our Civil No-Contact Order ("50C orders") page and 50B orders on our Domestic Violence Protective Orders ("50B orders") page.

* NCGS §§ 50D-1(1);50C-8(c);50B-3(b)
** NCGS § 50D-5

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