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Illinois Protective Orders Laws

Protective orders are court orders requiring a named individual to stay a certain distance away from another for a specified period of time, for the protection of the other person. Most often, protective orders (or restraining orders) are sought by the victims of domestic violence. Illinois protective order laws allow for "emergency" orders that last up to 21 days, on up to "plenary" orders that last two years (but may be extended if necessary).

Protective orders are incredibly useful. Abusers isolate and control the victims of abuse. A protective order uses the power of the court and police force to eliminate the conditions that make it possible for an abuser to intimidate someone looking to free themselves from a bad situation. Protective orders can also serve as temporary rulings on important issues such as child custody and property rights.

Read about the main points of Illinois' protective orders laws in the table below. See Domestic Violence: Orders of Protection and Restraining Orders to learn more.

Code Section ICS Ch. 750 §60/201, et seq.
Activity Addressed by Order Prohibition of abuse, neglect, or exploitation; exclude from dwelling, counseling; regarding minor children: grant temporary custody, visitations, support; possession of personal property; prohibition from firearm possession; prohibition of access to records
Duration of Order Emergency: minimum 14 to maximum 21 days. Interim: 30 days. Plenary: maximum 2 years. All orders can be extended.
Penalty for a Violation of Order If knowing violation: class A misdemeanor. If violating order concerning minors: Class 4 felony. If willful violation: contempt of court; may include jail, restitution, fines, attorney's fees and costs, or community service. Court encouraged to follow these guidelines: 1st violation: minimum 24 hours jail; 2nd or subsequent violation: minimum 48 hours jail
Who May Apply for Order A person who has been abused by a family or household member, or by any person on behalf of minor child or adult who cannot file due to age, health, disability, or inaccessibility
Can Fees Be Waived? Yes; no fees for filing petitions or certifying orders.
Order Transmission to Law Enforcement Certified copy filed with sheriff or other law enforcement official same day order is issued
Civil Liability for Violation of Order Contempt of court

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching

Illinois Protective Orders Laws: Related Resources

Need Protection From Abuse? Get a Protective Order With an Attorney's Help

A protective order can help protect you and your family and help you take control of a dangerous situation. If you feel threatened you don't need to face the person intimidating you alone. A qualified Illinois family law attorney can help with this and other legal actions. 

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