How do Utah Protective Orders work?

How do Utah Protective Orders work?

What is the process for getting a protection order against someone?

A protective order, often referred to as a restraining order, can be issued by the courts in a limited number of circumstances. If you file for a protection order, you will be called the “petitioner” and the party against whom you are seeking the protection order will be called the “respondent.” Here are the steps that you must take in order to get a protective order issued by the court:

First, you must fill out some forms requesting the protective order. These forms can be found online at

Once you have filled out the necessary forms, you must take the forms to the district court in the county where you live. Once you reach the courthouse, locate the clerk’s office and tell them that you want to file a Request for a Protective Order and they will make sure that you have filled out all the necessary paperwork.

If all of the paperwork is correctly filled out, and no other information is missing, the clerk will take you in front of a judge, this is called an ex parte hearing. During this hearing, the judge will look at your paperwork and will give you a chance to explain why you think a protection order is necessary.

If the judge chooses to grant the order, the order will only be temporary. The clerk will give you a copy of the temporary order and will give the County sheriff a copy of the order as well so that the Sheriff can serve a copy on the party against whom you are seeking the protection order. Once the temporary order is served upon the other party, the order becomes effective and will remain in effect until the court hearing for the Final Protective Order (this will usually be scheduled within 20 days of initially granting the temporary protection order).

In order to make the protection order final, you must appear for the Final Protective Order court date. During this court appearance, the other party has the chance to appear and contest the order. It is at this stage during the proceeding that an attorney will be most helpful. Since the opposing party has the opportunity to also have counsel present, it is always a good idea to bring your own counsel so that you are not blindsided when opposing counsel appears and tries to get the protective order dismissed. This part of the process is more of an adversarial proceeding and both sides have the chance to present evidence, witnesses, and testimony on their own behalf to demonstrate to the court why a final protective order should, or should not, be issued. At the close of all of the evidence, the judge will weigh both sides and will come to a final conclusion of whether or not to grant a Final Protective Order.

What is a Final Protective Order?

A final protective order has two parts, a criminal and a civil part.

The criminal part lasts indefinitely and states that the respondent shall not commit any of the following “criminal” offenses against the petitioner: domestic violence, abuse, harassment, communicating directly or indirectly with the petitioner, entering the petitioner’s residence and its premises, coming within a specified number of yards of the petitioner, petitioner’s residence, or place of employment. (These crimes are listed under Utah Code section 78B-7-106(2)(a)-(e)). If the respondent commits any of these offenses, it will be considered a criminal violation of a protection order.

The civil part lasts for 150 days. Civil provisions of the protective order include things like granting temporary custody of any minor children, setting a temporary amount for child or spousal support. The civil portion of the order lasts for only 150 days since matters such as these should be taken before a family court for final resolution.

What are the criteria for granting a protection order?

Under Utah Code 78B-7-102(1), a protection order will be granted where abuse has occurred. Abuse occurs when someone: (1) purposely causes you physical harm; (2) tries to cause you physical harm; or (3) makes you afraid that you will be physically harmed.” According to Utah Law 78B-7-103(1) & (2) You can seek a protective order against an abusive partner or person regardless if you or that person has left the residence or premises and regardless of whether an action for divorce between the parties is pending.

What happens if the respondent violates the protection order?

Under Utah’s Code, 78B-7-106(5)(b) & (c), a violation of the criminal part of a civil protection order is considered a Class A Misdemeanor, which can be prosecuted by the county attorney as a criminal matter. A violation of the civil provision of the protection order is subject to contempt proceedings by the court.

After a Final Protective Order is issued, can it be modified or dismissed?

If either party makes a motion with the court to either modify or dismiss the protective order, the court can consider the motion. However, the criminal provisions of a protective order may not be vacated within two years of issuance unless the petitioner is aware of the hearing and appears before the court and consents to vacate the criminal provisions or the order, or the petitioner submits a verified affidavit consenting to the criminal provisions of the order to be vacated. See Utah Code 78B-7-106(10).

If two years has passed, the court may dismiss the protective order if it determines that the petitioner no longer has a reasonable fear of future abuse. The court weighs several factors in making this determination, all of which are listed in Utah’s Code 78B-7-115(1)(a)—(f).

If the order has been in effect for at least one year, the court may amend or dismiss the protection order if it finds that: “(1) the basis for the issuance of the protective order no longer exists; (2) the petitioner has repeatedly acted in contravention of the protective order provisions to intentionally or knowingly induce the respondent to violate the protective order; (3) the petitioner’s actions demonstrate that the petitioner no longer has a reasonable fear of the respondent; and (4) the respondent has not been convicted of a protective order violation or any crime of violence subsequent to the issuance of the protective order, and there are no unresolved charges involving violence conduct still on file with the court.” See Utah Code 78B-7-115(2)(a)-(d).


Utah Domestic Violence Council (

Utah’s Court Resources on Protective Orders (


  • Call Now (801) 872-2222
    Free Case Review
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Test Ring Me

Client Reviews

More than 100% confident in Michael and John. Both have represented me in business law. Never seen anything they can't more
I love these guys, They do such a good job with all of my legal needs. They handle my business and family law. There strategies are top notch. Well done. And thank more
Ryan Blake and Sherri Strong were so great to work with during my divorce. They were very responsive and understanding of my situation. I would highly reccommend using Hepworth and more
My man was Tyler. He did an excellent job for me on all counts, his staff was very prompt to my inquiries. I always felt well taken care. I feel like i gained a friend😎read more
Mike was fast in responding to my situation. So far they have been great to respond to any and all questions. Will update more
I used Micheal to get out of a commercial lease, he saved me $10,000 a month plus help me get money back from a former business partner that strapped me with an additional $42,000 in debt. Thanks Michael Hepworth really appreciate the more
They are the best at what they do, very professional. I haven’t ever felt like just a client, I felt like they actually cared and tried as a great mentor when I was lost, willing to be their and give advice on a friendly level to. And although I wasn’t the easiest to deal with late on payment and keep wanting to hold off, Hepworth was always their on time to deal the best. Give it up for my man Ryan b he’s awsome and very fair. Hepworth is the way to go. Great service is what you can more
When I started looking for a divorce lawyer I was nervous because I had been married for 20 years (2nd marriage). So I googled inexpensive divorce lawyers and guess what, your law firm came up first. Coincidence? Maybe because I normally would look further but I had a good feeling about this firm. Turns out I was right. Ben Lawrence got in touch with me he listened to my story gave me his advice went over costs and how it worked and I was hooked. He was very intelligent, knowledgeable, and willing to help me the whole way through the process. He was the best person/lawyer I could have ever found. And I went with my gut!! He is the best!!!read more
Hepworth & Associates is amazing!!!! I would recommend them to all of my family and friends. They did a great job at communicating with me through the whole process and made sure my case was handled quickly and professionally. Sonja was very knowledgeable and made me feel at ease through the whole process. She answered all of my questions very quickly and made sure I knew what to expect through the process. I am so grateful I went with Hepworth!read more
I called just to see if anything could be done for my situation. They had an easy form for me to fill out for the attorney to review before deciding if I should come in for a free consultation. It was so easy and the secretary was very professional and kind. Even if I don't have a case, I will definitely be contacting them in the future if the need more
I have full confidence in their abilities and expertise.
I was facing a powerful multibiollion dollar corporation in a law suit! Me Hepworth and his associates did an outstanding job in representing me! I am so pleased with my representation! They kept me informed the entire time! They were sensitive to my concerns! They helped me get a very good settlement!If you want a bulldog attorney on your side, I can’t give you a better recommendation than Michael Hepworth and associates!read more
yes!! they saved me. I was being sued.they were wonderful and quickly got the other party to drop the case that should never have been started. they let us make payments on the lawyer fees. tyread more
This was the first time I have ever experienced any situation were I needed legal help! Mike and John were more help then I ever expected. They answered any and every question the first time even if it was the same question over and over again. I never felt like I was bothering any of them! I would use them in the future and highly recommend this office!!!read more
They were a godsend for me. I had looked for an attorney to help me for several years and they were the best. I won a difficult case dealing with homeowners more
Exceptional staff. Do everything to help you with your case. Would definitely recommend going here for your legal needsread more
Fast response. Willing to answer any and all questions and gets back with you quick. I will be adding more to this review as time goes more
I just wanna say a HUGGEEE thank you to Chelsea and Michael Hepworth in helping me getting my case dismissed!!!!! not only was Michael patient and understood my situation but he also made sure i wasn’t railroaded at the end of the day!! Chelsea did such a great job in gathering my information together and help me with my pay plan! I had to pay excessive fees for my impound fees and was short on funds and she completely understand where i was coming from! i recommend these guys to you not only are they SHARP but they get it down, my case is now dismissed COMPLETELY!! thank you Hepworth & Associates!!!read more
These guys are excellent attorneys and have a great staff! I highly recommend them!
my fiancée had to call there office repeatedly to get the status of my case. My fiancée singlehandedly kept the case from getting dismissed because it had sat carelessly dormant for so long and it was her that had to bring it to there attention. And then, when we suggested a way for them to address the obstacles created by my ex-wife and the careless mishandling of my matter (I suggested filing a Motion to Waive the Requirement for Respondent to Take the Parenting Class), your office responded that it couldn’t be done, when in fact, I knew it could be. I paid a paralegal to draft a motion, forwarded it to you and then your office copied it in and submitted it to the court…then the magic happened. The case was resolved and the divorce was granted. I provided you with the legal fodder to complete the job. I was told my case flat-fee agreement (in flat fee cases , I understand that I will not be billed for phone calls, faxes, court appearances, attorney preparation time, paralegal time, or any other hourly fees for work done by the Firm.) than I got a bill 2 years later for 540.98 said they could not reach me... also never got any final paperwork from them... I also did upfront fee $1,300.00 and now its at collections ... I did turn them in to the Utah State more

Search Site

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Search in posts
Search in pages
Filter by Categories
Accident and Injury
Business Law
Car Accidents
Child Custody
Child Support
Civil Law
Constitutional Law
Contract Law
Corporate Law
Criminal Defense
Criminal Law
DUI Defense
Employment Law
Eviction Law
Family Law
Father's Rights
Landlord Tenant Law
Mother's Rights
Personal Injury
Protective Orders
Real Estate Law
Trials & Litigation
Trusts, Wills & Estate Planning
Wills & Estate Planning
Wills & Trusts