What can I do if the abuser violates the order?
Violations of an order of protection can be dealt with in the court that issued the order through civil contempt or through reporting it to the police.
If the abuser violates your order in the courthouse in front of the judge, the judge can certify that s/he saw or heard the act that violated the order and that it was, in fact, civil contempt. The judge can immediately punish the person by a fine up to $25.00, by imprisonment up to five days, or by both. If the judge does not see the act of contempt, then you would file a petition for contempt and the abuser would be served with notice of your petition and a hearing would be held. At the hearing, if the judge believes that s/he committed contempt, s/he can be found guilty of a petty misdemeanor, which can carry a penalty of up to 60 days imprisonment.1
Another way to report a violation of an order is to call the police. An intentional violation of an order of protection can be a misdemeanor crime and punishable by up to one year incarceration, a fine of up to $1,000, or both. If the violation results in bodily injury or if it is a second conviction for violating the order, the minimum punishment is supposed to be 30 days in jail. If the violation results in serious bodily injury or it is a third conviction for violating the order, the minimum punishment is supposed to be one year in jail.2
For more information about contempt, including the difference between criminal contempt and civil contempt, go to our general Domestic Violence Restraining Orders page.
1 M.R. 2.1.7; 7 Guam Code § 34101(b)
1 9 Guam Code § 30.40(a),(b)