Legal Information: District of Columbia

Restraining Orders

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Updated: 
August 31, 2021

Who can get an anti-stalking order?

You may be eligible for an anti-stalking order (ASO) if you are being stalked by someone with whom you do not have an intimate, family, or household relationship. If you are being stalked by a family member, a household member, or a current or former intimate partner, then you would have to apply for a civil protection order instead. Anti-stalking orders are only for situations in which the relationship between the petitioner and respondent does not qualify under a civil protection order.

Can I file for an anti-stalking order if I am a minor?

If you are age 16 or older, you can file a petition for an anti-stalking order (ASO) on your own behalf. If you are under 16, you cannot file on your own behalf.

Depending on your age, a “qualified adult” can file on your behalf as follows:

  • If you are age 13 through 17, the following people can file for you:
    • a parent, legal guardian, or legal custodian; or
    • an adult that you choose who is related to you by blood, adoption, custody, marriage, or domestic partnership.
  • If you are age 12 or under, the following people can file for you:
    • a parent, legal guardian, or legal custodian.1

The court can appoint an attorney for a minor but only if appointing an attorney would not delay the judge’s decision on a temporary or final ASO.2

1 D.C. Code § 16-1062(c)
2 D.C. Code § 16-1062(e)

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