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How Can I Get a Restraining Order In Oregon?

Figuring out how to get a restraining order in Oregon can be stressful and overwhelming at an already difficult time. At Johnson and Taylor, our domestic violence lawyers are well-versed in the process and help clients in Salem, Oregon, and surrounding communities find the peace of mind and protection they need.

What Is a Protective Order?

A protective order is a civil legal remedy that prohibits a potentially harmful person from contact with the person who filed for the order. In Oregon, there are several types of protective orders.

Family Abuse Prevention Act (FAPA) Restraining Orders

A FAPA restraining order offers protection from abuse by a current or former spouse, domestic partner, intimate partner, family member, or parent of a victim’s child. If the victim is under the age of 18, the respondent must be at least 18 and be a current or former spouse, domestic partner, or someone with whom the victim has had a sexually intimate relationship.

Sexual Abuse Protective Order (SAPO)

A Sexual Abuse Protective Order may be available to individuals in certain circumstances when they are subjected to unwanted sexual contact by another person who is not a family member or intimate partner.

Elder/Disabled Abuse Prevention Act (DAPA) Restraining Orders

This type of restraining order is intended to protect people 65 and older or those who are vulnerable due to a disability from neglect and physical, verbal, financial, and sexual abuse.

Stalking Protective Order

A stalking protective order is designed to protect a person who is being stalked. Stalking usually involves a significant pattern of engaging in unwanted or repeated contact, or intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly alarming or coercing another person.

A domestic violence lawyer can help determine which type of protective order is most appropriate for your circumstances.

Where to File for a FAPA Restraining Order in Oregon

You must file for a restraining order in the county courthouse where either you or the respondent lives. There is no fee to obtain a restraining order. It’s important to make sure the restraining order paperwork is filed in the correct jurisdiction. An experienced family law attorney can ensure that paperwork is filed with the correct court and all required information is included.

What Proof Do I Need to Get a Restraining Order?

In addition to age and relationship requirements, certain criteria must be met to obtain a FAPA restraining order, including: 

  • Instances of abuse: The respondent must have caused you physical injury or made you fear they would cause physical harm to you within the previous 180 days. This includes being forced to have sexual relations against your will. If the person who abused you was in jail or lived more than 100 miles from your home for a time, it may not count as part of the 180 days. You may still be able to obtain a restraining order even if it’s been more than 180 days since you were abused.
  • Credible threat to safety: Your physical safety or the safety of your children must be in jeopardy at the time you file for the restraining order. Rude behavior or emotional or mental abuse do not provide sufficient cause to grant a restraining order.

When completing your petition for a restraining order, it’s crucial to be detailed about the nature of the abuse and the dates it occurred. A domestic violence lawyer can help you fill out the paperwork and advise you on specific language and details to include. Don’t hesitate to ask your family law attorney questions if you’re unsure about what to say.

What Happens After I File for a Restraining Order?

A judge will review your paperwork and may ask you some questions. If the restraining order is granted, a copy must be hand-delivered to the respondent by a sheriff’s deputy, process server, or any adult who lives in the state of Oregon.

The respondent has 30 days from the date of service to request a hearing. If they do not request a hearing, the restraining order will stay in effect generally for a period of one year. If requested, a hearing may be scheduled quickly, so it’s important to make sure the court has your current contact information, such as phone number and mailing address.

If you fail to attend the hearing, the order likely will be dismissed. Having a family law attorney assist you with the process and represent you at the hearing can help you avoid common mistakes, present convincing arguments on your behalf, and obtain a restraining order that covers all the issues you wish to address.

How Long Does a Restraining Order Last?

If granted, your restraining order will be in effect for one year from the date the judge signed it, unless it is dismissed or canceled by the court. A restraining order can affect child custody, so if circumstances change and you wish to amend it or renew it for another year, your domestic violence lawyer can help with that as well.

Contact Our Family Law Attorneys In Oregon  

At Johnson and Taylor, our domestic violence lawyers know that dealing with abuse and getting a restraining order can be traumatic. Our compassionate, competent attorneys and staff are here to help you get through it. Johnson and Taylor litigates personal injury, divorce and family law and estate planning and probate cases. Our team includes Spanish-speaking attorneys, and our divorce and family and estate planning and probate lawyers serve clients in Marion, Polk, and Linn County and other surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 503-990-6641 to schedule a consultation.

How Can I Make Sure I Get Enough Alimony in Oregon?

Known as spousal support in Oregon, alimony is a payment made by one spouse to provide financial assistance to the other during and after a divorce. Whether you’re thinking of filing for divorce or you’re already receiving alimony or spousal support, it’s important to know how much (if any) you may be entitled to receive. Our family law attorneys at Johnson and Taylor explain how alimony works in Oregon and how a divorce lawyer can ensure your arrangement is fair.

Types of Alimony in Oregon

There are three types of spousal support in Oregon. Each one serves a specific purpose.

  • Transitional spousal support may be ordered for example to enable one spouse to attend school or a training program to improve their career opportunities and earning capacity.
  • Compensatory spousal support may be ordered for example to a spouse who helped fund the other’s higher education so they could get a degree that increased their earning capacity. Common examples of this include obtaining a Ph.D., an MBA, or a medical or law degree.
  • Maintenance support may be ordered for example when one spouse has a higher-earning capacity than the other spouse to enable the other spouse to continue a standard of living similar to what they had during the marriage. It’s more commonly ordered when a divorce involves a long-term marriage.

How Is Spousal Support Determined in Oregon?

There is no set formula for determining alimony payments in Oregon. Ideally, if you and your spouse are on decent terms, your divorce lawyer can analyze both parties’ finances and negotiate a fair amount of spousal support in your divorce settlement. If alimony must be ordered by the court, a judge has discretion in what they can consider. Some factors that they often consider are:

  • The length of the marriage
  • Age and health status
  • Each spouse’s financial needs and resources
  • The requesting spouse’s employment skills, work experience, and earning potential
  • Which spouse has custody of the children and who pays child support

Spousal support is most often awarded in situations where there is a significant income or earning capacity disparity between spouses. Courts try to enable each spouse to live at a comparable standard to what they enjoyed during their marriage. To ensure you receive the full amount of alimony to which you may be entitled, it’s crucial to have an experienced family law attorney advocate for you in court.

Questions About Alimony in Oregon

Knowing the answers to these questions can help you better understand how much you may receive in alimony, and for how long.

  • Can alimony be modified? Spousal support payments can be increased, reduced, or terminated in some cases. When there’s a significant change in the financial status of either party, they can petition the court for a modification. Common reasons for modifying a spousal support order include a decrease or increase in income, job loss, illness, retirement, and remarriage. However, if alimony was not included in your final divorce settlement or judgment, you cannot go to court and ask for it later.
  • Can alimony be paid in a lump sum? In Oregon, spousal support may be paid in a single lump payment or in installments, which are typically paid monthly. Maintenance support usually is paid monthly, while a judge may order a lump sum to be paid for compensatory or transitional support. This varies according to the specific circumstances.
  • Is alimony paid indefinitely? Typically, a divorce judgment will include a date when spousal support payments will end. Depending on the situation, it may be ordered for an indefinite period or a few years.
  • Does alimony have tax consequences? Yes, but determining what they are can be complicated. Prior to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA), the receiving spouse had to declare alimony payments as income to the IRS and on income state tax returns, and payments were tax-deductible for the paying spouse. However, in divorce settlement agreements dated Jan. 1, 2019, or later, alimony payments are not deductible by the paying spouse, and the receiving spouse does not have to report spousal support as taxable income. If you’re uncertain about how alimony and child support payments may affect your tax liability, talk to a tax professional or your child support lawyer.

How a Divorce Lawyer Can Help

The best way to ensure you’re getting the full amount of alimony you may be entitled to receive or paying the correct amount to your ex is to seek the counsel of an experienced family law attorney. A lawyer who knows the ins and out of divorce law and spousal support in Oregon can protect your rights and interests and provide compassionate legal support throughout the process.

Contact Our Family Law Attorneys in Oregon  

Johnson and Taylor litigates personal injury, divorce and family law and estate planning and probate cases. Our divorce and family and estate planning and probate lawyers serve clients in Marion, Polk, and Linn County and other surrounding communities. Our caring, dedicated team includes Spanish-speaking attorneys who understand that hashing out issues such as alimony and child support can be challenging. Contact us online or call us at 503-990-6641 to schedule a consultation.

How Is Child Support Determined in Oregon?

Making sure your children have everything they need to live a healthy, happy life is a crucial part of parenting. In Oregon, both parents are obligated to provide financial support for their children based on child support guidelines as outlined by the state. Whether you are going through a divorce, custody, or need assistance with child support enforcement, our family law attorneys at Johnson and Taylor can help.

Factors Considered When Calculating Child Support

Several factors are used to determine the amount of child support payments in Oregon. The children’s specific needs, each parent’s income and ability to pay, and the amount of parenting time are all considered by the court. In addition, one or both parents are responsible for covering the cost of childcare, medical care, health insurance, and educational needs. Financial obligations such as debt, spousal support, union dues, and other expenses are taken into consideration as well.

Calculating Child Support

Although Oregon offers a calculation tool based on state child support guidelines, it’s important to seek the counsel of an experienced child support lawyer to ensure the amount you end up paying or receiving is fair. You’ll need to gather information such as the monthly gross income for you and your co-parent, spousal support, social security or veteran’s benefits, and other similar expenses or income. Using the Oregon parenting time calculator can help you figure out the average number of annual overnights the children are with each parent.

In addition to disclosing any income and expenses you have, you’ll provide information such as:

  • Childcare costs for the children you share
  • Childcare costs for any children from other relationships
  • Health insurance coverage costs for you and your children
  • Social security or veterans’ benefits the children receive due to a parent’s disability or retirement
  • Other income and debts

Although the calculator estimates how much child support you will receive or be required to pay, a parent’s actual enforceable obligation can only be established by an administrative or court order.

Disputing the Amount of Child Support

If you believe the amount you are to receive or pay is inappropriate, a child support attorney can help you challenge it in a court hearing. You must present reasons you think the amount is unreasonable, and a judge will decide whether to modify payments after considering the following factors:

  • Other financial resources
  • Reasonable necessities
  • Net income, particularly after payment of joint debt
  • Ability to get a loan or borrow money
  • Needs of other children or dependents
  • Special hardships
  • Whether the custodial parent is to remain a full-time parent and homemaker
  • Tax implications
  • Income of another spouse or live-in partner
  • Evidence that children are not living with either parent
  • The return on capital
  • Education costs such as room, board, tuition, and fees
  • Other factors that impact the children’s well-being and a parent’s ability to pay

If you’re a paying parent, it’s important to keep in mind that child support will not be reduced simply because you work less or not at all. If you’re unemployed or underemployed and have the potential to work more, the court may add prospective income you could be making.

When a Parent Refuses to Pay Child Support

Unfortunately, many people have trouble collecting child support payments from their co-parent. Known as the obligor, the paying parent is supposed to make child support payments on time and in full each month. An obligor cannot shirk their responsibility by simply failing to pay. If you’re having a problem collecting child support, a child support lawyer can help you take legal action. The state can garnish the obligor’s wages, collect tax refunds, place a lien on their property, and may suspend their passport and driver’s license.

A parent who doesn’t pay their court-ordered child support is considered in contempt of court. This means an attorney can help you make them appear in front of a judge to explain why they’re not paying. If they fail to show up, a warrant may be issued for their arrest.

When a Parent Can’t Pay Child Support

If you have been ordered to pay child support and can’t meet your monthly obligation due to unforeseen circumstances, a family law attorney can help you file a support modification that explains why you need a reduction. You must present evidence that shows why you do not have the income to pay. Whether it’s due to a job loss, illness, or another reason, you should contact your child support attorney as soon as possible.

Contact Our Child Support Lawyers in Oregon

At Johnson and Taylor, we understand that issues like child support can cause emotional and financial upheaval in families. Our Spanish-speaking attorneys are well-versed in Oregon child support law and always keep your children’s interests at the forefront. Johnson and Taylor litigates personal injury, divorce and family law and estate planning and probate cases. Our divorce and family and estate planning and probate lawyers serve clients in Marion, Polk, and Linn County and other surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 503-990-6641 to schedule a consultation.