Do I need anything special to get my protective order enforced?
In some states, you will need a certified copy of your protective order. A certified copy says that it is a “true and correct” copy; it is signed and initialed by the clerk of court that gave you the order, and usually has some kind of court stamp. A certified copy of a New Hampshire protective order will have a stamp with a raised seal.
When you first get your protective order, New Hampshire courts are supposed to give you a certified copy. But if you don’t have a certified copy, you can go to or call the court that gave you the order and ask for a certified copy. Some courts may require that you go in person and present ID, so you may want to make sure you have a certified copy before leaving New Hampshire if you can.
If your abuser violates the order & you don’t have a certified copy, the responding police officer can call the court to ask them to fax over a certified copy (this faxed copy can be treated as certified)1. However, this can take time and may delay getting your order enforced. Consider getting a certified copy before you need it.
Note: It is a good idea to keep a copy of the order with you at all times. You will also want to bring several copies of the order with you when you move. Leave copies of the order at your work place, 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. Give a copy of the order to anyone who is named in and protected by the order.
1 Chapter 15 of the New Hampshire Judiciary Domestic Violence Protocol. www.nh.gov/judiciary/district/protocols/dv/c15.pdf