Are Restraining Orders and Protective Orders the Same Things?

Criminal Law
Are Restraining Orders and Protective Orders the Same Things?

Are Restraining Orders and Protective Orders the Same Things?

Posted in Criminal Law
by Van Den Heuvel Law Office

If you have been accused of domestic violence, or if you have been the victim of domestic violence, you might be wondering: are restraining orders and protective orders the same thing? While it can be confusing when a court order is referred to by different terms, it is important to know that, in effect, protective orders are the same thing as restraining orders in Michigan. To be clear, a personal protective order, or personal protection order (PPO) that can be issued under Michigan law is a type of restraining order, and it can also be known as an injunction. Our Michigan domestic violence lawyers can tell you more about protective orders in the state and what you can do if your ex is seeking one or if you need to seek a protective order to protect yourself from abuse.

Protective Orders are Restraining Orders in Michigan

Personal protection orders, or PPOs, are court orders that a court can issue after another person alleges that they are at risk of threats or violence. Under Michigan law, there are two different types of PPOs that a court can order:

  • Domestic PPOs, which can be issued in cases where domestic violence is alleged, which means violence involving a spouse, former spouse, someone you are dating or dated, someone you live with or lived with, or someone with whom you share a child; and
  • Stalking PPOs, which can be issued in cases where stalking is alleged, meaning a pattern of acts that make the petitioner feel that they are being threatened or harassed, or that make the petitioner feel frightened.

What Protective Orders or Restraining Orders are Designed to Do

PPOs in Michigan are designed to protect the petitioner (the person seeking the restraining order) from domestic violence or stalking-related violence. It is important to know that each state has its own laws concerning PPOs or restraining orders and what they can or cannot do. Under Michigan law, a restraining order can result in one or more of the following, for example:

  • Preventing the respondent (the person against whom the court orders a PPO) from entering onto the premises where the petitioner lives or works;
  • Assaulting the petitioner;
  • Making threats;
  • Removing minor children from the petitioner’s household;
  • Buying a firearm or possessing one;
  • Gaining access to information about the petitioner’s employment or home address; or 
  • Harming the petitioner’s pet.

A PPO can be issued in addition to domestic violence criminal charges, so it is important to seek advice from an attorney about defense strategies for the PPO and for any criminal charges you are facing. While a PPO does not have criminal consequences, it can affect a person’s ability to have child custody, or may result in certain child custody restrictions or limitations.

Contact Our Michigan Domestic Violence Lawyers

If you are going through a family law case and allegations of domestic violence arise, you should seek help from a lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced Michigan domestic violence lawyer at our firm is here to assist you. Contact Van Den Heuvel Law Office for more information. 



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