About Abuse

Information for Teens

Updated: 
May 7, 2012

What is a restraining order and what does it do?

A restraining order (also known as a protective order, order of protection, or many other names) is a court order requiring that your boyfriend or girlfriend, past or present, stop "abusing" you.  The order may also state that your boyfriend or girlfriend cannot contact you, has to stay away from you, and may include many other protections.  The requirements for getting a restraining order, exactly what protections you can get from a restraining order, and how "abuse" is defined are different in each state. In addition, not all states allow minors to get a restraining order on their own without an adult's help. Check our Restraining Orders pages for your state on this site to find out more.