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New York Protective Orders Laws

Protective orders (also called "restraining orders") are official court documents that require an individual to stay away from, and/or cease communication with, the person that requested the order. They may be sought in instances where the petitioner (the person seeking protection) genuinely fears for his or her safety. While occasionally they're used by celebrities to keep obsessive fans at arm's length, the most common use of protective orders is in relation to acts of domestic violence or stalking.

This article provides a brief overview of protective orders in the state of New York.

New York Protective Order Laws: At a Glance

New York, as in most states, has protective order laws that can get triggered in domestic violence cases. These court orders often state, for instance, that the respondent may not come within a certain distance of the protected person for a period of time.

Protective orders can also require the abuser to:

  • Stop all contact and communication with the victim;
  • Move out of a home shared with the victim;
  • Stay away from the victim's home, school, or place of employment;
  • Submit to counseling; and
  • Reimburse the victim's reasonable expenses (such as attorney's fees).

The basic provisions of New York protective order laws are listed in the table below. See Domestic Violence: Orders of Protection and Restraining Orders for more information.

Code Section

§ 530.12 et seq. of the New York Consolidated Laws

Activity Addressed by Order

Enjoining contact; excluded from dwelling, school, and employment; regarding minors: visitation; counseling; reimburse reasonable expenses; retraining from intentionally injuring or killing, without justification, any companion animal the defendant knows to be owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the victim or a minor child residing in the household

Duration of Order

Temporary order: 4 calendar days

Penalty for a Violation of Order


Who May Apply for Order

Any person suffering from abuse or the threat of abuse from another (orders can extend to protect spouses, former spouses, parents, and children, or between members of the same family; persons legally married to each other; persons formerly married to each other; persons who have a child in common; persons who are not related but have been in an intimate relationship)

Can Fees Be Waived?


Order Transmission to Law Enforcement

Copy to the sheriff's office or police department in the county or city in which the petitioner resides

Civil Liability for Violation of Order

Yes, 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.

Research the Law

New York Protective Order Laws: Related Resources

Get Legal Help with a Protective Order

If someone is hurting or threatening to hurt you, there are resources available for you when you're ready. Contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline for 24/7/365 support at 800-799-7233. If you've been abused or fear someone may abuse you in the near future, you may want to get a protective order.

Please contact a New York domestic violence attorney for help.

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