Legal Information: Georgia

Statutes: Georgia

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Updated: 
November 3, 2021

19-13A-4. Protective order; findings of fact

(a)(1) In order to determine if a protective order alleging dating violence shall be granted, the court shall provide findings of fact establishing that:

(A) There is a committed romantic relationship between the parties that is not associated with mere friendship or ordinary business, social, or educational fraternization;

(B) Factors exist which corroborate the dating relationship;

(C) The parties developed interpersonal bonding above a mere casual fraternization;

(D) The length of the relationship between the parties is indicative of a dating relationship;

(E) The nature and frequency of the parties’ interactions, including communications, indicate the parties intended to be in a dating relationship;

(F) The parties by statement or conduct demonstrated an affirmation of their relationship to others; or

(G) Both parties have acknowledged the dating relationship.

(2) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as preventing the filing or granting of a protective order otherwise provided for under law for persons who reside together.

(b) The court may, upon the filing of a verified petition and as provided in subsection (a) of this Code section, grant any protective order or approve any consent agreement to bring about a cessation of acts of dating violence. The court shall not have the authority to issue or approve mutual protective orders concerning paragraph (1), (3), or (5) of this subsection, or any combination thereof, unless the respondent has filed a verified petition as a counter petition pursuant to Code Section 19-13A-3 no later than three days prior to the hearing and the provisions of Code Section 19-13A-3 have been satisfied. The orders or agreements may:

(1) Direct the respondent to refrain from such acts;

(2) Provide for possession of personal property of the parties;

(3) Order the respondent to refrain from harassing or interfering with the petitioner;

(4) Award costs and attorney’s fees to either party; and

(5) Order the respondent to receive appropriate psychiatric, psychological, or educational services as a further measure to prevent the recurrence of dating violence.

(c) A copy of the order shall be issued by the clerk of the superior court to the sheriff of the county wherein the order was entered and shall be retained by the sheriff as long as that order shall remain in effect.

(d) Any order granted under this Code section shall remain in effect for up to one year; provided, however, that upon the motion of a petitioner and notice to the respondent and after a hearing, the court in its discretion may convert a temporary order granted under this Code section to an order effective for not more than three years or to a permanent order.

(e) A protective order issued pursuant to this Code section shall apply and shall be effective throughout this state. It shall be the duty of every superior court and of every sheriff, every deputy sheriff, and every state, county, or municipal law enforcement officer within this state to enforce and carry out the terms of any valid protective order issued by any court under the provisions of this Code section.

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