Stalking Protective Order VS. Relief From Abuse Order

Published by Leah Henderson on

What is a Stalking Protective Order?

stalker taking photos from a distance
stalker taking photos from a distance

A Stalking Protective Order is a civil court order, which protects a victim from someone who is NOT a family or household member who has stalked the victim. 12 V.S.A. § 5133.

Stalking is when someone, either directly or indirectly through a third party, purposefully and repeatedly (2 or more times) follows, monitors, surveils, threatens, makes threats about you or interferes with your property. The Stalker must know or should know that their actions would reasonably cause the victim to:

  • fear for his or her safety or the safety of a family member; or
  • suffer substantial emotional distress as evidenced by:
    • a fear of unlawful sexual conduct, unlawful restraint, bodily injury, or death; or
    • significant modifications in the person’s actions or routines, including
      •  moving from an established residence, 
      • changes to established daily routes to and from work that cause a serious disruption in the person’s life, 
      • changes to the person’s employment or work schedule, or 
      • the loss of a job or time from work. 12 V.S.A. § 5131.

How does a Stalking Protective Order Differ from a Relief From Abuse Order?

row of criminal law books
row of criminal law books

A Relief From Abuse Order can only be used if the victim and plaintiff are family or household members, whereas a Stalking Protective Order is used to protect a victim from someone who is not a family or household member.

A household member is generally defined as someone who you previously or currently live with, have or had a sexual relationship with, or someone you are dating or have dated, for any period of time. 15 V.S.A. § 1101(2).

Contact us today if you have any additional questions or want to discuss your options.

Leah Henderson

Leah Henderson is the lead Attorney at Burke Law P.C.’s White River Junction office. She has successfully defended hundreds of cases ranging from misdemeanors to serious felonies. She also has extensive experience handling a variety of juvenile cases.

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