Sacramento Domestic Violence Attorney

Sacramento Domestic Violence Attorney

Domestic Violence Restraining Orders

The domestic violence attorneys at Hughes Law Group have extensive experience both securing and defending applications for Domestic Violence Restraining Orders in Sacramento, Placer, Yolo and El Dorado counties.

If your case involves domestic violence issues, please consult a Sacramento domestic violence attorney – Hughes Law Group at (916) 444-7704 or by clicking the button below.

Forms of Domestic Violence

Forms of Domestic Violence

What is domestic violence?

The United States Department of Justice defines the term “domestic violence” as a pattern of abusive behavior used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner.

Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions (or threats) that influence another intimate partner.

California law defines “domestic violence” as abuse perpetrated against any of the following persons [Family Code §6211]:

  • A spouse, former spouse, or registered domestic partner. [Family Code §297.5(a), (b)]
  • A cohabitant or former cohabitant. “Cohabitant” means a person who regularly resides in the household. “Former cohabitant” means a person who formerly regularly resided in the household. [Family Code §6209]

What is abuse?

“Abuse” means any of the following [Family Code §6203]:

  • Intentionally or recklessly causing or attempting to cause bodily injury.
  • Sexually assaulting.
  • Placing a person in reasonable apprehension of imminent serious bodily injury to that person or to another.
  • Engaging in any behavior that has been or could be enjoined under Family Code §6320, which is molesting; attacking; striking; stalking; threatening; sexually assaulting; battering; harassing; telephoning, including, but not limited to, annoying telephone calls as described in Penal Code §653m; destroying personal property; contacting, either directly or indirectly, by mail or otherwise; coming within a specified distance of; or disturbing the peace of the other party.
  • Engaging in any of these behaviors, in the judge’s discretion and on a showing of good cause, toward other named family or household members.

A Divorce, Legal Separation or contested cases of paternity cannot be resolved in a DVRO action.  Those are handled in a separate family law case.

What a Domestic Violence Order Can Do for You

A restraining order is a court order.  If the court makes a finding of abuse, the court can order the perpetrator to:

  • Stay a certain distance away from you, your children, or other people in your household.
  • Stay away from your residence, workplace, or your child’s school.
  • Move out of your house (even if the abuser owns the house with you or is also on the lease).
  • Not have any guns or ammunition.
  • Follow child custody and visitation orders.
  • Pay child support.
  • Pay spousal support (if the parties are married).
  • Stay away from your pets.
  • Transfer a cell phone number and account to you,
  • Not make any changes to insurance policies.
  • Not incur large expenses or do anything significant to affect you community property (if you are married to the abuser).
  • Release or return certain property.
  • Pay certain bills.
  • Complete a 52-week batterer intervention program.

Domestic Violence FAQs

Emergency Protection Order (EPO)
An Emergency Protective Order (EPO) is secured by a law enforcement officer who is made aware of the immediate and present danger of abuse or domestic violence. Family Code §6250. An EPO only lasts from 5 to 7 days. This gives the protected party time to apply for temporary restraining orders (TRO).

Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
A Temporary Restraining Order is intended to prevent a recurrence of domestic violence and ensuring a period of separation for the persons involved. If granted, these orders are immediately enforceable and don’t expire until the hearing.

Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO)
These are long-term orders that are issued after notice to the Respondent and a hearing. The Petitioner must file a proof of service proving that the Respondent was served with the TRO application and any temporary orders. The Respondent may file a Responsive Declaration rebutting the allegations of abuse before the hearing. At the hearing, the parties provide sworn testimony. If the Petitioner demonstrates to the Court’s satisfaction reasonable proof of a past act or acts of abuse, a DVRO will be issued.

Criminal Restraining Order (CRO)
These are issued by the Criminal Department of the Superior Court after a Defendant has pleaded no contest or has been found guilty of a crime. The purpose of these orders is to protect the crime victim from further abuse or contact with the person convicted. Frequently, issuance of a CRO is a condition of parole or probation.

Absolutely. California law recognizes that domestic violence affects not only the direct victim, but also minor children living in the same home.

If the Family Court makes a finding of domestic violence “abuse”, the Family Court must then apply the presumption that the abuser is not entitled to custody of children s/he has with the abuse victim or joint custody. Family Code §3044.  

Before a Family Court can award custody or joint custody to a perpetrator of domestic violence, it must state on the record, that giving him or her custody or visitation is in the child's best interest and that the remaining six factors set forth in section 3044 are overcome. Those factors are:

  • Completion of a batterer's treatment program meeting the criteria of Penal Code § 1203.097(c).
  • Completion of a program of alcohol or drug abuse counseling, if the court determines such counseling is appropriate,
  • Completion of a parenting class, if the court determines the class to be appropriate,
  • Compliance with the terms and conditions of probation or parole,
  • Compliance with any protective order or restraining order, and
  • That the perpetrator has not committed further acts of domestic violence.


Yes. A restrained party cannot own, possess, purchase, or receive any firearms during the term of the protective order. [Family Code §6389(a).] A violation is punishable by up to one year in jail or a $1000 fine or both. [Penal Code §29825(a).]

If an officer serves a protective order and there is an indication that the respondent has a gun or ammunition, the officer can take the firearm and ammunition immediately. [Family Code §6389(c)(2).]

Take threatening phone calls seriously and report them to your local police department. In Sacramento, you can use the Sacramento Online Reporting System or call (916) 808-5471.

Sacramento County Domestic Violence Prevention Resources

National Domestic Violence Hotline

1 (800) 799-7233
TDD: 1 (800) 787-3224

211 Sacramento
Information about community programs and services for families and individuals.

Safe Start Center
Resources for children exposed to violence.

Sacramento Crisis Nursery

(916) 394-2000 (South)
(916) 679-3600 (North)
24-hour shelter & emergency childcare for children ages 0-5.

A Community for Peace

(916) 728-7210 (Crisis Line)
6060 Sunrise Vista Dr., Suite 2340, Citrus Heights, CA 95610


(916) 920-2952 (Crisis Line)
(916) 448-2321


(916) 369-5447 or (800) 339-7177
Short term counseling for youth and their families.

My Sister's House

(916) 428-3271 (Crisis Line)

Roseville Direct Services Office

775 Sunrise Ave Suite 160
Roseville, CA 95661
Phone: (916) 773-7273
Fax: (916) 773-3990

Community Legal Services/ Victims Resource Center

(800) 842-8467

Placer County Domestic Violence Prevention Resources

Stand Up Placer

Crisis/Info Line 24/7: (800) 575-5352
Auburn Direct Services Office
11985 Heritage Oaks Place Suite 200
Auburn, CA 95603
Phone: (530) 885-0443
Fax: (530) 889-8497

Placer County District Attorney's Office

10810 Justice Center Drive
Roseville, CA 95678
Contact: (916) 543-8000
Victim Witness Assistance
Contact: (916) 543-8000 ext. 2570

Placer County Sheriff

(530) 889-7800