I'm a victim of stalking or sexual assault. Do I file for a stalking or sexual assault protective order or a domestic violence protective order?
Both stalking or sexual assault protective orders and domestic violence protective orders can protect victims of stalking or sexual assault. Deciding which type of protective order to file depends on your relationship to the perpetrator.
If you and the perpetrator are not members of the same household (also called “household members”), you need to file for a stalking or sexual assault protective order.1 If you and the perpetrator are household members, you need to file for a domestic violence protective order.2 See Who can file for a domestic violence protective order? for the definition of “household member.”
1 Alaska Statute § 88.65.850(a)
2 Alaska Statute §18.66.100(a)
What are the steps for filing for a stalking or sexual assault protective order?
To request a stalking or sexual assault protective order from a judge, you generally need to file a petition (a written request) in your local district or superior court.1 To get a copy of the forms for a stalking or sexual assault protective order, go to your local district court or superior court, domestic violence or sexual assault support organization, or download the forms from the Alaska courts website. (To find the courthouse near you, go to AK Courthouse Locations). You may request either an ex parte 20-day order for immediate protection or a hearing for a final one-year order, or both.2
The Alaska courts website provides very detailed instructions for filing the petition, which we have summarized in the section Steps for getting a domestic violence protective order. Generally, the steps for filing for a stalking or sexual assault protective order are the same as the steps for getting a domestic violence protective order, so we suggest that you read through that section before starting the process of filing.
1 Alaska Statute §18.65.850(a)
2 See the AK Court System Instructions for Requesting a Protective Order Against Stalking or Sexual Assault
Can minors get stalking or sexual assault protective orders?
A parent or guardian may file a petition for a protective order on behalf of a minor (under age 18) who has been the victim of stalking or sexual assault.1
1 Alaska Statute §18.65.850(a)
How much does it cost to get and serve a protective order? Do I need a lawyer?
Nothing. There is no filing fee to get any protective order.1 Also, you can have law enforcement serve the order and, as long as there are no other petitions being served with the protective order, there will be no fee for service.2
Although you do not need a lawyer to file for a protective order, you may want to have a lawyer, especially if the abuser has a lawyer. Even if the abuser does not have a lawyer, you may want to speak to one before taking any legal action to make sure your rights are protected.
You can find contact information for lawyers in your area on the AK Finding a Lawyer page. If you cannot afford a lawyer but want one to help with your case, you can find contact information for organizations that provide legal services, some of which may be free or low-cost if you qualify.
1 Alaska Statute §18.65.865(b)
2 Alaska Statute §§ 18.65.865(a); 18.66.160(a),(c)
If you are going to be in court without a lawyer, our Preparing for Court – By Yourself section may be useful to you.
Can I still get an order even if I waited a long time to file after being sexually assaulted?
Yes. The judge cannot deny your petition for a protective order if the only reason is that there has been a lapse of time between the sexual assault and the filing of the petition.1
1 Alaska Statute § 18.65.850(e)