Domestic violence is a crime, and any individual who is a victim of hitting, choking, kicking, threats, or harassment by a family member or household member has a legal right to protection.
In August 2016, State Senator Julie Morrison passed House Bill 6109—a plan to establish a pilot program that would allow individuals to electronically file petitions for temporary orders of protection. Morrison felt that temporary orders of protection should be made accessible and available to protect anyone from further abuse. The new law became effective January 1, 2017 and amends the Illinois Domestic Violence Act that was created in 1986.
One of the main goals of House Bill 6109 is to eliminate the barriers that domestic violence victims face. Previously, a victim of domestic violence had to appear in a civil court to file a petition for an order of protection.
Benefits to filing an electronic order of protection include the following:
- The process eliminates stress on victims as they may be too afraid that their abuser will discover that they filed. However, an electronic petition allows victims of domestic violence to file a petition without having to leave their home;
- The administrative director of the court has access to the website in which someone files the temporary petition; and
- Domestic violence victims now have more options—they can either travel to a civil court to file a petition for an order of protection or they can file a petition electronically.
Additional Factors to Keep in Mind
The updates to this law do not affect the already existing laws that are in place regarding filing an order of protection. Additionally, the identity of a person who signs a petition can be seen and accessed by organizations who have been trained to assist domestic violence victims with temporary orders of protection.
Speak with a Compassionate Family Law Lawyer Today
If you or someone you love is a victim of domestic violence, it is imperative that you speak with a compassionate DuPage County family law attorney to discuss your situation and your rights. You have a right to be free from abuse, and the attorneys at Roscich & Martel Law Firm, LLC are available to help protect that right. Call (630) 793-6337 today to schedule a confidential consultation to speak with one of our skilled attorneys. You may have legal recourse both through protective orders or civil litigation for your injuries.