40-15-102. Eligibility for order of protection
(1) A person may file a petition for an order of protection if:
(a) the petitioner is in reasonable apprehension of bodily injury by the petitioner’s partner or family member as defined in 45-5-206; or
(b) the petitioner is a victim of one of the following offenses committed by a partner or family member:
(i) assault as defined in 45-5-201;
(ii) aggravated assault as defined in 45-5-202;
(iii) intimidation as defined in 45-5-203;
(iv) partner or family member assault as defined in 45-5-206;
(v) criminal endangerment as defined in 45-5-207;
(vi) negligent endangerment as defined in 45-5-208;
(vii) assault on a minor as defined in 45-5-212;
(viii) assault with a weapon as defined in 45-5-213;
(ix) strangulation of a partner or family member as defined in 45-5-215;
(x) unlawful restraint as defined in 45-5-301;
(xi) kidnapping as defined in 45-5-302;
(xii) aggravated kidnapping as defined in 45-5-303; or
(xiii) arson as defined in 45-6-103.
(2) The following individuals are eligible to file a petition for an order of protection against the offender regardless of the individual’s relationship to the offender:
(a) a victim of assault as defined in 45-5-201, aggravated assault as defined in 45-5-202, assault on a minor as defined in 45-5-212, stalking as defined in 45-5-220, incest as defined in 45-5-507, sexual assault as defined in 45-5-502, sexual intercourse without consent as defined in 45-5-503, sexual abuse of children as defined in 45-5-625, or human trafficking as defined in 45-5-701; or
(b) a partner or family member of a victim of deliberate homicide as defined in 45-5-102 or mitigated deliberate homicide as defined in 45-5-103.
(3) A parent, guardian ad litem, or other representative of the petitioner may file a petition for an order of protection on behalf of a minor petitioner against the petitioner’s abuser. At its discretion, a court may appoint a guardian ad litem for a minor petitioner.
(4) A guardian must be appointed for a minor respondent when required by Rule 17(c), Montana Rules of Civil Procedure, or by 25-31-602. An order of protection is effective against a respondent regardless of the respondent’s age.
(5) A petitioner is eligible for an order of protection whether or not:
(a) the petitioner reports the abuse to law enforcement;
(b) charges are filed; or
(c) the petitioner participates in a criminal prosecution.
(6) If a petitioner is otherwise entitled to an order of protection, the length of time between the abusive incident and the petitioner’s application for an order of protection is irrelevant.