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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    3

    Default Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    My question involves restraining orders in the State of: New York

    I have a paranoid neighbor who has verbally and emotionally harassed me and my family on and off for 4 years. We got a non-harassment order of protection lasting only 3 months several years ago (after an arrest for disorderly conduct); lately, she has been acting out again. Can I obtain a longer civil harassment order of protection against her without hiring a lawyer and going through litigation (which I can't afford), or having to have her arrested, which isn't easy, because she's not physically violent? I know in California you can file your own request for protection from harassment at a local court house.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    15,931

    Default Re: Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    In New York, if the harasser is not someone with whom you have an intimate or familial relationship with, orders of protection must be pursued through the criminal courts.

    Have you notified the police of the harassment?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    The police are aware of her....when this happened 4 years ago, they suggested we ignore it. We recently contacted the police when she started acting out again; the policewoman who answered the call was the same person, and she said....I thought you were going to ignore it (as if it just happened....we hadn't called the police in 4 years). Anyway, they know about her weirdness, but dismiss her as harmless and mentally unstable (which she is, being bipolar and suffering from delusions).
    We just want her to stop her abusive behavior, and after speaking to a lawyer friend, we realize litigation is a slow and clumsy process that could take years and lots of money up front. We were hoping for an alternative that could effectively discourage her behavior. (She is estranged from her family, by the way).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    arizona
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    I'm not an attorney, and I don't have legal experience except for my own real life experience with filing an Order of Protection against our own mentally unstable neighbor – so I thought I'd share.

    It took us several years to finally get up the nerve to file an Injunction Against Harassment Order against our neighbor (who by the way has 2 felony convictions and other criminal/civil convictions & charges). The disturbances from this neighbor were becoming progressively worse. We thought if we didn't do anything, if something really bad happened, there would be nothing to show that we'd been abused by this neighbor in the past. We have filed several police reports against this neighbor for disturbing our peace, and filed criminal charges against him for threatening to kill us, harassment and disorderly conduct.

    In fact, this same neighbor is scheduled for trail later this year for 8 felony counts of DUI & Endangerment. He's in his early 40's and has been in & out of trouble since he was a teenager.

    Many people disregard harassment or intimidation when they think that the person/neighbor/or whoever it is abusing them is mentally impaired. To us, that was more than a good enough reason to document the disturbing events with police reports & an Order of Protection just in case something worse happens. If this neighbor really wanted to do something to us, he'd just go right through the Order of Protection, but at least the order would show that we have concerns, and feel threatened by him.

    Getting an Injunction Against Harassment Order wasn't easy. We had to show proof, police reports, etc. And he hadn't been physical yet either.

    Hope this helps you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    Are you in New York? I don't know of an Injunction Against Harrassment being available in New York; only in other states like Arizona.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    arizona
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Can I Get a Restraining Order for Harassment That Isn't Physical

    I'm in Ariozna.

    I didn't know the difference between an Order of Protection and an Injunction Against Harassment until we finally had to file one against our neighbor. I assumed all states had both. If the economy weren't so bad, we'd move even though we've been here 14 years and love our place. Living in fear is miserable.

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