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Legal Information: Washington

Restraining Orders

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December 3, 2020

Step 2: Ex parte hearing

If you are in immediate danger and requested a temporary order, the judge or commissioner will hold an ex parte hearing in person or by telephone.1 The abuser does not have to be with you or be told you are asking the judge for a temporary order for protection.

After the ex parte hearing, if you were granted a temporary order, the clerk will file the signed temporary order and make copies. Remember that you may need additional copies for schools, daycare, and your place of employment.

If you received a temporary order, keep a copy of it with you at all times.

Whether the judge grants you a temporary order or not, you may be given a court date for a court hearing on your petition for a final domestic violence restraining order within 14 days (assuming your petition is not dismissed).2 This hearing will be in front of a judge at a time shown on the notice of hearing. The notice of hearing is the document that tells the respondent where and when to appear for the court hearing. At this hearing, the abuser and you will both have a chance to explain your sides to the judge, present evidence and witnesses, etc.

1 R.C.W. § 26.50.070(3)
2 R.C.W. § 26.50.050