Who can file?

Under the new Act, the definition of Family or Household member is added. This change in law is necessary because now limitations to availability of Protection Orders have been set to cases involving family or household members, which means:

  1. A person who is a current or former spouse
  2. A person who is dating or has dated
  3. A person who is engaged or was engaged in a sexual relationship
  4. A person who is related by blood or adoption
  5. A person who is related by marriage
  6. A person who has established legal relationship or previously established a legal relationship:
    1. as a guardian
    2. as a ward
    3. as a custodian
    4. as a foster parent; or
    5. in a capacity similar to those listed in clauses A-D
  7. A person who has a child in common and
  8. A minor child of a person in a relationship described above.

If you fit any of the descriptions described in the Family and Household Violence definitions, you may qualify for a Protection Order.

As stated previously, Federal Law mandates that no Protection Order for abuse shall require a filing fee.

How do I File?

If you have found yourself in the need of a Civil Protection Order and you are a resident of Newton County, you will need to go to the Newton County Circuit Court Clerks Office and fill out the paperwork necessary. You must have the physical address of the person who you are filing against. The Sheriff cannot serve the Protection Order without a good address. In most cases you and the person you have filed against will have to be heard before the judge in a Court Hearing. YOU MUST ATTEND THIS HEARING or the Protection Order can be dismissed.

If you have more questions or concerns, please contact the Newton County Clerk’s Office.