Step 5: Service of process.
The abuser must be served with the papers that tell him/her about the hearing date and your temporary restraining order (if the judge gave you one). The clerk will forward the order to the marshal and the appropriate chief of police.1 The marshal will then find the abuser and serve him/her notice of the temporary restraining order (if the judge gave you one) as well as the date and time of the scheduled permanent restraining order hearing.1 There is no charge to have the authorities serve the abuser. Do not attempt to serve the papers on the abuser yourself.
Note: After the abuser is served with the temporary restraining order, s/he can ask the judge to dismiss or change the order. If the abuser does ask the judge to dismiss or change the order, a hearing will be scheduled and s/he is required to give you only 24 hours’ notice of the hearing. At the hearing, the judge will decide whether or not to grant the abuser’s request.2
1 VI ST T. 16 § 98(c)
2 VI ST T. 16 § 98(d)
You can find more information about service of process in our Preparing for Court – By Yourself section, in the question called What is service of process and how do I accomplish it?