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Legal Information: District of Columbia

Restraining Orders

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Updated: 
November 1, 2019

How will a judge make a decision about whether or not to grant the order?

The judge can issue an extreme risk protection order if the judge finds that there is significant danger that the respondent will cause bodily injury to himself/herself or others by having possession or control of, purchasing, or receiving any firearm or ammunition.1 When deciding if there is significant danger, the judge will consider factors such as:

  • the respondent’s history or pattern of threats or acts of violence;
  • any recent threats or acts of violence;
  • whether the respondent got hold of firearms, ammunition, or other deadly or dangerous weapons within one year before the petition for an extreme risk protection order was filed;
  • the respondent’s illegal or careless use, display, waving (brandishing) of a firearm or other weapon;
  • the respondent’s criminal history;
  • the respondent’s violation of any court orders;
  • evidence that the respondent is having a mental health crisis or other dangerous mental health issues; and
  • the respondent’s use of drugs (a controlled substance).2

1 D.C. Code § 7-2510.03(g)
2 D.C. Code §§ 7-2510.04(e); 7-2510.03(e)