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Protective Orders

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Protective Orders

Where to Get Protective Orders

How to Get Protective Orders

When You Need Immediate Protection

What Happens Next?

Testifying at the Final Hearing

Final Orders

Violation of Orders

Stalking and Protective Orders

Enforcing Protective Orders from Other States

Law Enforcement's Duties Toward Victims of Domestic Violence

The Law

Criminal Charges for Domestic Violence and Stalking

Protective Order Resources


It is against the law for your spouse, partner, family or household member to:

  • Assault or attempt to injure you or your children or your property.
  • Threaten you so that you fear for your physical safety or the safety of your children.
  • Force sexual contact or relations on you against your will.
  • Enter your residence or home against your will if you are living separately.
  • Kidnap or interfere with your freedom against your will.
  • Destroy or threaten to destroy your property, including pets.
  • Follow you around or act in a way that would make a reasonable person afraid.
  • Harm or threaten to harm an animal or household pet.

The law considers all these actions to be domestic violence.

If someone has done any of these things to you, you can ask the police for help. 

You can also ask the courts to order the person abusing you to stay away from you and to stop abusing you.   This order is called a protective order or PO.

The police can also file separate criminal charges against this person.

  • New Hampshire law protects adults against domestic violence committed by
  • any family or household member,
  • your husband or wife,
  • your ex-husband or ex-wife,
  • your partner or ex-partner, or
  • someone you are dating or have dated.

Minors (teens, ‘tweens, and younger) can also ask the court for protective orders against persons who they are currently dating, or have been dating in the past. This includes romantic relationships, whether sexual or not.

To use this law:

  • you do not have to be married to or even have lived with the person who abused you
  • you do not have to file for a divorce
  • you do not need a lawyer
  • you do not have to pay any court costs
  • you do not have to pay any sheriff’s fees

The Law: Domestic Violence RSA 173-B Protective Orders (POs)


If English is your second language or you don’t speak any English, you have a right to request an interpreter to assist you with the police and in any court proceedings. Make sure to let the police and/or the court know that you need an interpreter to help you.

March 16, 2017

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