Your Virginia Legal Team

Manassas Protective Orders

In Manassas, a protective order is an order from the court that stipulates a defendant may not have contact of any kind with the individual or individuals named in the order. A protective order and a restraining order are considered to be one and the same. Sometimes, such an order prohibits contact in any form. Other times, such an order simply prohibits violent or illegal contact.

This protection can extend not only to the person who is alleged to be the victim in the case but also to their family and household members. There can be serious repercussions for violation of an order, so it is important to know what a Manassas protective order will entail if issued. A domestic violence attorney in Manassas will be able to help those impacted by a  protective order to understand their rights and their restrictions.

Defining Protective Orders

Usually, a protective order requires that the person to whom it is issued against does not make contact with the individual or individuals named in it. This means that the individual may not make any form of contact, whether in person, over the phone, via email, or through text. A protective order in Manassas even prohibits the person to whom it is issued from asking another individual to deliver a message to the named individual or individuals on their behalf.

Sometimes, however, a protective order will merely mandate that the individual to whom it is issued have no violent contact with the individual or individuals named in the order. Under such circumstances, the individual may have contact, so long as it is in a peaceful and consensual manner.

Emergency Protective Order

Generally, an emergency protective order is issued when an individual has been charged with domestic violence and battery. An emergency protective order is a temporary protective order that is issued by a judge and expires by operation of law 72 hours after its issuance.

Preliminary Protective Order

A preliminary protective order is issued prior to a permanent protective order in Manassas. If an individual petitions the court for a permanent protective order, the court will first issue a preliminary protective order. This preliminary protective order may stand in effect for no more than 15 days. Following the expiration of the preliminary protective order, the matter must come back to court and a full hearing must be conducted to determine whether a permanent protective order will be entered.

Issuing an Order

A protective order can be issued by either a judge or a magistrate, depending on the nature of the order. Temporary protective orders, which last a maximum of 72 hours, can be issued by a magistrate, and it is important to note that a magistrate may issue a temporary protective order even if the individual to whom the order is issued and who is subject to the order’s terms is not present. Preliminary and permanent protective orders, however, must be issued by a general district court judge, a juvenile domestic court judge, or civil court judge in the presence of the individual to whom the order is issued and who is subject to the order’s terms.


A protective order is a civil matter that may involve a criminal dimension. For example, if an individual violates a protective order, such a violation may result in criminal penalties as the court has the ability to find that individual to be in contempt of the court and to fine and/or imprison them. Therefore, while a protective order in Manassas is civil in nature, a violation of a protective order is a criminal offense.

Protective Order Considerations

A temporary protective order only lasts for 72 hours while a preliminary protective order can last for up to 15 days. Upon the expiration of a preliminary protective order, the court will make a determination as to whether or not to issue a permanent protective order. A permanent protective order is not truly permanent and can last for a maximum of two years.

A protective order can only be vacated, amended, or extended by the judge who issued the protective order or by a judge of a higher court, following an appeal. A domestic violence attorney who has experienced with cases with protective orders in Manassas will be able to assist in the request for changing an order.

Contact Us

Do not send us confidential information related to you or your company until you speak with one of our attorneys and get authorization to send that information to us.

Copyright 2024 Virginia Criminal Lawyer. All rights reserved. Disclaimer/Privacy Policy