What impact will an order for protection have?
Burnsville, MN Family Law Attorney, Merlyn Meinerts discusses what an order for protection will ultimately affect.
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There are some cases where an order for protection is simply abused to gain advantage in a divorce process ’cause it can do things like kick someone out of a house immediately. It can award custody. It can award child support. It can be a short-form way of getting the same type of relief one could have in a divorce process. So it’s important to scrutinize those types of cases to make sure the order for protection is appropriately used. The important thing about an order for protection is, if there is a finding of domestic abuse against a party, that then overcomes a lot of presumptions that would otherwise apply. For example, it’s presumed under Minnesota law that everyone has joint legal custody, but it then says, “unless there’s a finding of domestic abuse.” So an order for protection can override the presumption of joint legal custody. There’s a presumption under the law that parents are entitled to 25 percent, at least 25 percent of parenting time – again, unless there’s domestic abuse. So an order for protection would override that presumption. And, finally, there’s a relatively new statute with respect to moving children out of the state and relocating outside of the state of Minnesota. Generally, the burden there falls on the party seeking to move, unless there’s been a finding of domestic abuse, and then the burden shifts to the other parent for purposes of preventing the move out of state. So an order for protection can be very significant for those reasons.
The final reason I would throw out there is that it does affect the party’s ability to own and operate firearms. So for hunters and those who are engaged in those kinds of recreational activities, that can be a very significant development as well.