Every year, countless visitors and residents are arrested for violating a protective order issued in Maryland or another state. Typically, we defend visitors who had a protective order placed against them by a loved one or former loved one in Maryland or their home state. They may reconcile and decide to come to the beach for a quick getaway. In addition, they may be unaware they are violating a protective order. Once they come in contact with the police and a random check reveals the protective order, that is when the trouble starts.

In addition to numerous domestic crimes in the criminal law code there are also offenses in the family law code.   The most common of these offenses is the violation of a protective order.  There are three basic types of protective orders including interim, temporary, and final.  Interim protective orders are usually the first step in a person using the court system to keep another person away.  A judge will typically sign off on an interim protective order shortly after a person files one, and keep it active until the case can be heard in court.  A temporary protective order is usually granted after a hearing, and lasts for a definite amount of time or until the parties go back to court and mutually agree to withdraw it.  The amount of time a temporary order lasts is up to the judge and the parties have input. Final protective orders last indefinitely, or until they are brought back to court on a motion.

Family law section 4-509 makes it illegal for any person to fail to comply with any type of protective order.  A failure to comply could be classified by a number of actions including showing up at a person’s house, intentionally approaching them in public, or even calling them.  We have seen numerous cases where the person with the order falsely accuses a boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or family member of violating a protective order.  A violation of this law is a misdemeanor that carries up to 90 days in jail for a first offense and a $1,000 fine.  Repeat offenders face up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine.

Contact Attorney Brian Clark immediately by phone or email if you or a loved one are charged with this offense so we can prepare our defense.