Most restraining orders expire after a certain number of days or months, but in some situations the parties involved change their minds and want to have the restraining orders reversed sooner. If you or someone you know has a restraining order that is no longer needed, it is possible to have the order reversed. Remember, if a restraining order has not been reversed, it can be enforced by local law enforcement agencies at any time until a judge has approved a reversal.
Contact the clerk of the court that initially granted the restraining order. Ask the clerk what petition needs to be filed in order to reverse the restraining order. In most states, the petitioner is required to file a petition for an order to terminate. Always check with the clerk before filing any forms to be sure that you are following the proper procedure.
Prepare your petition for an order to terminate. The petition must include all of the information found in the current restraining order. If you do not have a copy of the restraining order, contact the sheriff who served the restraining order or the court for a copy. Contact the clerk of court or an attorney if you are having trouble wording the petition. The clerk may be able to provide you with a blank petition to complete and file.
Attend the scheduled court hearing and be prepared to explain your reasons for requesting the termination of the restraining order. Many judges are reluctant to reverse established restraining orders since they are granted based on a proven need for protection. The judge may require proof that the order is no longer needed.
Be willing to re-file your petition to terminate the order or to wait for an expiration of the order if judge refuses to reverse the restraining order. In most situations the judge will lift the restraining order if she is satisfied the filer does not need court protection, but there are cases in which the judge will refuse to grant the petitioner's request. If this happens and you are not sure you will be able to successfully re-file on your own, consult an attorney for assistance.
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