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Legal Information: Virginia

Restraining Orders

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December 4, 2020

What if I do not qualify for a family abuse protective order?

In Virginia, family abuse protective orders generally do not cover people who are/were not family or household members.

However, assault, stalking, and harassment are against the law. If one of these crimes is being committed against you, you may want to consider calling the police. If criminal charges are pressed against the abuser and a warrant is issued for the abuser’s arrest, a judge may be able to order him/her to stay away from you. You can also visit our Safety Tips page for ways to increase your safety.

If you do not qualify for a protective order based on domestic violence, you may be able to file for a Protective Order for an Act of Violence, Force or Threat.

If you are being stalked or harassed, go to the Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center website for more resources related to stalking and harassment, as well safety planning information.

Protective orders also do not cover many types of emotional or mental abuse. If you’re being mentally or emotionally abused, please contact a domestic violence organization in your area. They can help you figure out your options and offer you support. See: VA Places that Help.