I was denied a restraining order at the final hearing. What are my options?
If you are not granted a restraining order, there are still some things you can do to stay safe. It might be a good idea to contact one of the domestic violence resource organizations in your area to get help, support, and advice on how to stay safe. They can help you develop a safety plan and help connect you with the resources you need. For safety planning help, ideas, and information, go to our Safety Tips page. You will find a list of New Jersey resources on our NJ Places that Help page.
If you were not granted a restraining order because your relationship with the abuser does not qualify as a “family or household member,” you may be able to seek protection through the criminal courts. For more information, see What if I don’t qualify for a restraining order?
You can also reapply for a restraining order in the future if a new incident of domestic abuse occurs after you are denied the order.
If you believe the judge made an error of law, you can talk to someone a lawyer about the possibility of an appeal. Generally, appeals are complicated and you will most likely need the help of a lawyer. See our File an Appeal page for more information.