A new Illinois law will allow domestic violence victims to file for an order of protection online instead of requiring them to file in person. The law will also require any court that is located in a county that has a population of more than 250,000 residents to offer the option of remote hearings to obtain orders. The new law goes into effect January 1, 2023.
According to national statistics from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 36 percent of women and 34 percent of men have suffered harm by an intimate partner at some point in their life. In Illinois, it is estimated that 42 percent of women (two million) and 26 percent of men (one million) have been domestic violence victims.
Under Illinois law, domestic violence is defined as any act of hitting, kicking, choking, harassing, threatening, or otherwise interfering with the personal liberty of a household or family member. Domestic violence can include physical, emotional, sexual, psychological, or financial abuse.
Household or family members are defined as follows:
A person related by blood
A current or former spouse
A person who shares or used to share a home
People dating or who used to date
Parents who have a child in common or some type of blood relationship through a child in common
A person who has disabilities and any personal assistants
When a victim obtains an order of protection against their abuser, the abuser is prohibited from having any contact with the victim. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the court may also impose other actions it deems necessary to protect the victim.
There are three different types of order of protections the court can grant:
Emergency – An emergency order of protection is valid for 14 to 21 days. The court will also set a hearing for a plenary order.
Interim – Once the offender has been served or if – after 30 days – multiple attempts have been made to serve him or her.
Plenary – At the hearing that was set when the emergency order of protection was granted, the court will determine if a plenary order should be issued. If the offender does not show up at the hearing, the court will automatically grant the order. A plenary order of protection is valid for up to two years and can be renewed indefinitely under certain conditions.
If you are a victim of domestic violence, there are immediate steps you can take to protect yourself and your children, including obtaining an order of protection. For more information, call J. Aldrich Law, P.C. at 630-953-3000 to meet with one of our dedicated Naperville, IL domestic violence attorneys.