ELDER AND DEPENDENT ADULT ABUSE RESTRAINING ORDERS
Special protections and laws have been put into place to protect senior citizens and dependent adults from abuse, including restraining orders authorized by Welfare and Institutions Code Section 15610.07 and 15657.03. Elders or senior citizens are people aged 65 or older. Dependent adults are people between the ages 18 and 64 who have physical or mental impairments. Below is some information on what to do to obtain an elder or dependent adult restraining order:
Civil Harassment Restraining Orders
A restraining order is a court order that requires someone not to contact you or stay away from you, your home (unless you are roommates), and your work. You can ask the court for a civil harassment restraining order if you are concerned about your safety for any number of reasons by someone with whom you do not have an intimate or familial relationship, including being:
- Harassed (harassment is defined by California Code of Civil Procedure 527.6 as an “unlawful violence, a credible threat of violence”, or a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person that seriously alarms, annoys, or harasses the person, and that serves no legitimate purpose. Below are the specific definitions of harassment as provided for in section 527.6.
- Unlawful violence is any assault or battery, or stalking as prohibited in Section 646.9 of the Penal Code, but shall not include lawful acts of self-defense or defense of others;
- A credible threat of violence is a knowing and willful statement or course of conduct that would place a reasonable person in fear for his or her safety, or the safety of his or her immediate family, and that serves no legitimate purpose.
- A course of conduct is a pattern of conduct composed of a series of acts over a period of time, however short, evidencing a continuity of purpose, including following or stalking an individual, making harassing telephone calls to an individual, or sending harassing correspondence to an individual by any means, including, but not limited to, the use of public or private mails, interoffice mail, fax, or computer e-mail. Constitutionally protected activity is not included within the meaning of course of conduct. The course of conduct must be such as would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress, and must actually cause substantial emotional distress to the plaintiff.
- Assaulted or sexually assaulted; or
As one example of what you need to do in a particular county in the State of California to obtain an elder or dependent adult restraining order, the City and County of San Francisco has a specific website that has additional information about the process and forms you can download at http://sfsuperiorcourt.org/index.aspx?page=27. You can also utilize the free help from San Francisco’s ACCESS Center.
If you need additional assistance from an attorney to fill out the paperwork, file it or appear and represent you in court, the Evans Law Firm can assist you with these tasks. Contact an attorney at The Evans Law Firm for a free and confidential initial consultation,email@example.com or 415-441-8669. An attorney at the Evans Law Firm can assist with this process for a fee that will be agreed to before any work has been started.
Restraining orders are a necessary step if you want protection from someone that:
- is hurting (either physically or emotionally) or taking advantage of you;
- is stealing money or assets from you;
- you are dating (or used to date) or married to (or were married to) and they are hurting or taking advantage of you;
- you are closely related to (like a parent, child, brother or sister, grandparent, or grandchild) and they are hurting or taking advantage of you.
For non-elder or dependent adult abuse related restraining orders, you will need to file a Domestic Violence Restraining Order, in the Family Law Department. For help in San Francisco, you can physically go to the Civic Center Courthouse, 400 McAllister Street, Room 009
If you are 65 or older and are being abused physically, emotionally and/or financially by someone, contact The Evans Law Firm for help with an Elder Abuse Restraining Order.
For a free and confidential consultation, contact us at 888-50-EVANS, 888-891-4906 or 415-441-8669 or firstname.lastname@example.org.