Protection Orders in Nebraska

by Jerry Duane Clinch on Aug. 12, 2021

Divorce & Family Law 

Summary: An Article discussing the different Protection Orders available in Nebraska and information about filing for a Protection Order without an Attorney.

Under Nebraska law, there are three types of protection orders available: Domestic Protection Orders, Harassment Protection Orders, and Sexual Assault Protection Orders.

A protection order is an order from a Judge to protect people from abuse, sexual abuse, and/or harassment, and those who violate protection orders are subject to stiff penalties under Nebraska Law.

Domestic Violence Protection Order

Domestic Violence Protection Order is set forth in Neb. Rev. Stat. 42-924.

Any victim of domestic abuse may file a petition and affidavit for a protection order through our court system; filing a petition makes you the "Petitioner." The judge can provide the petitioner protection by ordering the respondent (the alleged abuser) to refrain from threatening, assaulting, attacking, or otherwise disturbing the peace of the petitioner. The judge can order the respondent not to telephone, email, or otherwise communicate with the petitioner. The court can also order that the respondent removed from the residence of the petitioner. Further, the court can order the respondent to stay away from that residence, or any other place specified by the court. If there are children involved, the court may award the petitioner temporary custody of any minor children for up to 90 days.

However, the respondent is entitled to due process and may request a hearing to protest the protection order. If a hearing is held and the court ultimately finds that the protection order is warranted and should stay in place, the protection order will remain in effect for one year. During this time, the protection order may not be withdrawn without a court order. However, if the court determines that there are insufficient grounds for the protection order to continue, the protection order will be dismissed.

Any person who knowingly violates a domestic violence protection order can be charged with a Class I Misdemeanor and faces up to one year of imprisonment and/or a one thousand dollar fine. If that person has a prior conviction for violating a protection under the statute, he faces a charge of a Class IV Felony which can result in up to a two years in jail and 12-months post-release supervision or a $10,000.00 fine, or both.

Harassment Protection Order

Harassment Protection Orders are set forth in Neb. Rev. Stat. 28-311.09.

Any person who has been harassed may file a petition and affidavit for a harassment protection order. Unlike the domestic violence protection order, the victim need not allege domestic abuse or violence. However, the petition for a harassment protection order must provide the court with an explanation of the events and dates of acts constituting the alleged harassment.

The judge can provide the petitioner protection by ordering the respondent (the alleged abuser) to refrain from threatening, assaulting, attacking, or otherwise disturbing the peace of the petitioner. The judge can order the respondent not to telephone, email, or otherwise communicate with the petitioner. The order will remain in effect for one year.

The court may assess fees and costs against the petitioner if statements contained in the petition were false and that the harassment protection order was sought in bad faith. On the other hand, the court also has the authority to fine the respondent with the costs associated with the respondent filing the petition.

The respondent is entitled to a hearing and may challenge allegations made in the petition for a protective order. However, if the court grants the order, it will remain in effect for one year and will not be withdrawn without a court order.

Any person who knowingly violates a harassment protection order can be charged with a Class II Misdemeanor and faces up to six months imprisonment and a one thousand dollar fine.

Sexual Assault Protection Order

Sexual Assault Protection Orders are set forth in Neb. Rev. Stat. 28-311.11.

Any victim of a sexual assault offense may file a petition and affidavit for a sexual assault protection order.

The judge can provide the petitioner protection by ordering the respondent (the alleged abuser) to refrain from imposing any restraint upon the person or liberty of the petitioner, harassing, threatening, assaulting, molesting, attacking, or otherwise disturbing the peace of the petitioner. The judge can order the respondent not to telephone, email, or otherwise communicate with the petitioner.

Just as with a Domestic Violence Protection Order and a Harassment Protection Order, the respondent is entitled to a hearing and may challenge allegations made in the petition for a protective order. However, if the court grants the order, it will remain in effect for one year and will not be withdrawn without a court order.

Any person who knowingly violates a sexual assault protection order can be charged with a Class I Misdemeanor and faces up to one year of imprisonment and/or a one thousand dollar fine. If that person has a prior conviction for violating a protection under the statute, he faces a charge of a Class IV Felony which can result in up to a two years in jail and 12-months post-release supervision or a $10,000.00 fine, or both.

Additional Information and Resources

The Nebraska Supreme Court website provides information and instructions regarding filing for a protection order for anyone who would like to file for a Protection Order themselves.  And the Nebraska Supreme Court has also prepared a Frequently Asked Questions page on their website. 

If you wish for assistance with filing for a Protection Order or with a Protection Order hearing, Clinch Law Firm is ready and able to assist you through the process and to help provide you with Peace of Mind.

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