You may have experienced or know someone who has dealt with a court order prohibiting them from contacting another person. Under Minnesota Law, the Order for Protection (OFP), the Domestic Abuse No Contact Order (DANCO), and the Harassment Restraining Order (HRO) are all different but serve generally the same purpose: they are put in place when someone claims to be afraid of unwanted contact from someone else. The differences between the three can be attributed to type of law, duration, and the relationship between the parties. Let’s break it down:
|Type of Court||family/civil||criminal||civil|
|Who sets it in place?||Person alleging abuse files the paperwork, and the judge must grant it||The prosecutor in a criminal case requests it, and the judge must grant it.||Person alleging assault or harassment files the paperwork, and the judge must grant it.|
|Against whom can it be placed?||Family or household member that allegedly abused the person filing for the OFP||Defendant in a domestic abuse criminal case||Almost anyone, if there is an instance of assault or harassment, or repeated instances of unwanted contact that substantial effect someone’s safety or privacy|
|Possible Terms||No virtual contact (calling, texting, etc.), no physical contact, can’t enter dwelling of allegedly abused, exceptions for visitation with children, treatment or counseling||No virtual or physical contact, not allowed in dwelling of allegedly abused person and possibly children, modifications allowed if circumstances change||No virtual or physical contact, requirement to stay certain distance away, can include specific requests by petitioner, such as contact only a certain number of times a week/month|
|Duration||Usually up to 2 years||For as long as criminal case lasts unless Judge orders a DANCO for probation||Usually up to 2 years, more if you have had multiple HROs with this person|
As you can see, there are many nuances that go into each type of order. If an OFP or DANCO has been placed against you, or if you are involved in an HRO with someone else, our attorneys here at Brandt Kettwick Defense can help.