Can the abuser have a gun?
Once you get a protection order, there may be laws that prohibit the respondent from having a gun in his/her possession. There are a few places where you can find this information:
- first, read the questions on this page to see if judges in Nebraska have to power to remove guns as part of a temporary or final order;
- second, go to our State Gun Laws section to read about your state’s specific gun-related laws; and
- third you can read our Federal Gun Laws section to understand the federal laws that apply to all states.
You can read more about keeping an abuser from accessing guns on the National Domestic Violence and Firearms Resource Center’s website.
What should I do when I leave the courthouse?
There are several things that you may want to consider doing upon leaving the courthouse. You will have to evaluate each one and see if it is safe for your situation. You may want to:
- Review the order before you leave the courthouse. If something is wrong or missing, ask the clerk how to correct the order before you leave.
- Keep a copy of the order with you at all times.
- Make several copies of the order as soon as possible and leave copies of the order at your workplace, at your home, at the children’s school or daycare, in your car, with a sympathetic neighbor, and so on.
- Give a copy to the security guard or person at the front desk where you live and/or work along with a photo of the abuser.
- Give a copy of the order to anyone who is named in and protected by the order.
- If the court has not given you an extra copy for your local law enforcement agency, take one of your extra copies and deliver it to them.
- You may wish to consider changing your locks and your phone number.
For more ways to stay safe, go to our Safety Planning page.
What can I do if the abuser violates the order?
You can call the police or sheriff, even if you think it is a minor violation. An abuser can be arrested, fined and/or jailed. A violation of a protection order can be a Class I misdemeanor - and if the abuser has a prior conviction for violating any protection order, then violating your order can be a Class IV felony.1
Nebraska law requires that an arrest be made if “probable cause” exists that the respondent violated a domestic abuse protection order.2 If you feel that law enforcement officers did not respond according to Nebraska law, you should contact an attorney to discuss the issue and to see what legal actions can be taken. Go to our NE Finding a Lawyer page for legal referrals.
If the police become involved, it is generally a good idea to write down the name of the responding officer(s) and his/her badge number in case you want to follow up on your case. Make sure a police report is filled out, even if no arrest is made. If you have legal documentation of all violations of the order, it may be useful in the future.
For more information about contempt, including the difference between criminal contempt and civil contempt, go to our general Domestic Violence Restraining Orders page.
1 NE R.S. § 42-924(4)
2 NE R.S. § 42-928
Can I extend my protection order?
A protection order can be extended (renewed) for a period of one year. To extend your order, you must file a petition and affidavit to renew the protection order within the 45 days before your order is set to expire. Regardless of when you file the affidavit and petition, the renewed order would be effective beginning on the first day after your current order expires and would expire one year from that date.1
You can get your order renewed even if there has been no additional incidents. So, even if your affidavit states there has been no major (material) change in the relevant circumstances since you got the order, you can still get your order renewed if:
- you are not asking for the order to be changed (modified) in any way; and
- the respondent:
- has been properly served with notice of the petition for renewal and notice of the hearing and s/he doesn’t show up at the hearing; or
- the respondent lets the court know that s/he does not disagree with the renewal.2
1 NE R.S. § 42-924(3)(b)(i), (3)(b)(iii)
2 NE R.S. § 42-924(3)(b)(ii)
What happens if I move?
Your order is good everywhere in the state. Additionally, federal law provides what is called “full faith and credit,” which means that once you have a protection order, it follows you wherever you go in the United States, including U.S. territories and tribal lands.
Different states have different rules for enforcing out-of-state orders. You can find out about your new state’s policies by contacting a domestic violence program, the clerk of courts, or the prosecutor in your new area.
You may want to call the court where you originally received the order to tell them your new address so that they can contact you if necessary - be sure to let them know if the address is confidential and ask how to make sure it cannot be accessed by the respondent.
To read more about this, please visit our Moving to Another State with a Protection Order page.