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Legal Information: New Hampshire

Restraining Orders

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Updated: 
February 10, 2020

How do I change, extend, or cancel my protective order?

Once an order is granted, only a judge can “dissolve”, or get rid of, it. If you want a final order to last longer, you may go back to court and ask a judge to extend your order. You should go in before your first order expires, or you may have to start all over.

After the expiration of the first order, the court may extend your order for one more year and from then on each extension may be for up to 5 years.

The court will usually extend your order when you apply, and then notify the abuser. The abuser may request a hearing to dispute the extension, which you will have to attend.

If you decide to let the abuser move back into your house after the court has ordered him to stay away, you must have the court take that part of the order away or the abuser may face arrest. 1

1 173-B:5 Relief

VI. Any order under this section shall be for a fixed period of time not to exceed one year, but may be extended by order of the court upon a motion by the plaintiff, showing good cause, with notice to the defendant, for one year after the expiration of the first order and thereafter each extension may be for up to 5 years, upon the request of the plaintiff and at the discretion of the court. The court shall review the order, and each renewal thereof and shall grant such relief as may be necessary to provide for the safety and well-being of the plaintiff. A defendant shall have the right to a hearing on the extension of any order under this paragraph to be held within 30 days of the extension. The court shall state in writing, at the respondent’s request, its reason or reasons for granting the extension. The court shall retain jurisdiction to enforce and collect the financial support obligation which accrued prior to the expiration of the protective order.

VII. Both parties shall be issued written copies of any orders issued by the court, and all orders shall bear the following language: “A willful violation of this order is a crime, as well as contempt of court. Violations of the protective provisions shall result in arrest and may result in imprisonment.” Orders shall clearly state how any party can request a further hearing and how the plaintiff may bring a criminal complaint or a petition for contempt if there is a violation of any court order.

VIII. (a) No order issued under this chapter shall be modified other than by the court. Temporary reconciliations shall not revoke an order.