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Legal Information: Virginia

Restraining Orders

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December 4, 2020

Who is eligible for this protective order? In which court is it filed?

You may be eligible to file a petition for a protective order against anyone who committed an act of violence, force or threat against you. You do not have to have a family or household member relationship to get this protective order.1  

If you are filing against someone who you do not have a family or household member relationship, you would file your petition in the General District Court.1  If you are filing against a family or household member, you would file in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court.2

The steps for filing are similar to the steps for filing for a family abuse protective order, as described in VA Protective Orders for Family Abuse.

You can find the petition for a protective order online, and instructions for how to fill the petition out on Virginia’s Courts Website.

1 See “Protective Orders: What does the new legislation mean?
2 See “What You Need to Know About Protective Orders.

Can the abuser find out my address and/or phone number from the order?

No. The court officials (as well as police officers) are not allowed to tell anyone the residential address, phone number, or place of employment of you or your family members if they are included in the order.1

1 Va. Code §§ 19.2-152.8(H); 19.2-152.9(F); 19.2-152.10(H)

How much does a protective order for an act of violence, force, or threat cost?

Nothing. Filing for a protective order is free.1

1 Va. Code §§ 19.2-152.8(J); 19.2-152.9(E); 19.2-152.10(I)