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Know the Laws: Oregon

UPDATED July 3, 2015

Family Abuse Prevention Act Restraining Orders

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A Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining order ("FAPA" order) is a civil order that provides protection from harm by a family or household member.

Basic information

back to topWhat is the legal definition of domestic abuse in Oregon?

This section defines domestic abuse for the purposes of getting a Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining order, commonly referred to as a "FAPA" order.

Domestic abuse is when a family or household member:

  • Attempts to hurt you physically;
  • Actually hurts you physically (intentionally, recklessly or knowingly);
  • Intimidates or makes you afraid of serious physical injury (intentionally, recklessly or knowingly); or
  • Makes you have sex against your will by force, or threat of force.*
“Family or household member” means any of the following:
  • a current or former spouse;
  • an adult related by blood, marriage or adoption;
  • someone you are living with or have lived with in the past;
  • someone you have been in a sexually intimate relationship with, within two years immediately preceding the filing of a restraining order petition under; or
  • someone with whom you have a child in common.**
* O.R.S. § 107.705(1)
** O.R.S. § 107.705(4)

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back to topHow can a Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining order protect me?

A restraining order can order the abuser to:

  • Stop abusing, threatening, or interfering with you and any children in your custody;
  • Stay away from your home, school, place of business, or other specified place;
  • Leave your home (if you live together);
  • Remove personal belongings from the home while police stand guard; and/or
  • Have no contact with you in person, by mail, or by phone.*
A restraining order can also:
  • Give you temporary legal custody of your children;
  • Give the abuser temporary custody (if you request this) dependent upon certain conditions to protect the children;
  • Allow you visitation rights to your children if the abuser has custody;
  • Order other relief that the judge thinks is necessary to provide for the safety and welfare of you and your children, including but not limited to emergency financial assistance from the respondent; and/or
  • Order other relief to prevent the neglect and protect the safety of any animal kept for personal protection, companionship, service or therapy (but not an animal kept for any business, commercial, agricultural or economic purpose).*
Whether a judge orders any or all of the above depends on the facts of your case.

* O.R.S. § 107.718(1)

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back to topWhat types of Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining orders are there? How long do they last?

When you go to the court to file for a restraining order, the judge might give you a temporary restraining order.  A temporary restraining order is a court order designed to provide you and your family members with immediate protection from the abuser.  You may receive a temporary restraining order as soon as you file your petition, without the abuser present in court.

The temporary restraining order is legal as soon as the court grants it.  However, it cannot be enforced until the abuser has been served with notice of the order.  A sheriff or another qualified person will serve the abuser with a copy of the order.

After the respondent (the abuser) receives the temporary restraining order, s/he has 30 days to ask for a hearing. If the abuser asks for a hearing, it must be held within 21 days of that request.  If the abuser contests (fights) the temporary order, then you will have a court hearing to determine if the temporary restraining order will continue.

Once issued, your (permanent) restraining order is in effect for one year unless:

  1. the order is dismissed or modified by the court;
  2. it is dismissed earlier by the court at your request; or
  3. the court renews it at your request, whichever comes first.*
Note: At the time you file your petition for a temporary restraining order, the judge may schedule an "exceptional circumstances" hearing.  What is an exceptional circumstances hearing?

*O.R.S. § 107.718(3)
** O.R.S. § 107.718(2)

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back to topIn which county can I file for a restraining order?

You can file a petition in the county where you live, or in the county where the abuser lives.*

* O.R.S. § 107.728

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