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If you’ve suffered sustained abuse or harassment, it’s in your best interest to take legal action. Multiple options are available in Minnesota, including orders for protection and harassment restraining orders. These decrees restrict access to victims of harassment, allowing them to feel safer and more secure. The relief provided by such measures can differ dramatically, however — as can the filing process.

Filing Fees

No filing fees are assessed when petitioning for OFPs. HROs, unfortunately, may prompt fees of up to $324. However, these can be avoided in select cases. For example, petitioners can sidestep fees if they are deemed indigent (incapable of paying) or are victims of criminal harassment.

Available Relief For Approved Petitions

While both OFPs and HROs provide legal protection, the extent of this varies based on the nature of the order. With OFPs, for example, the alleged perpetrator may be removed from the petitioner’s home by a law enforcement official. Additionally, temporary custody or parenting time arrangements could be provided if deemed in the best interest of affected children. OFP petitioners may also request that weapons be removed from the offending party’s home.

HROs do not allow for forcible removal by sheriffs, although respondents could be prevented from returning to the property in question. Furthermore, HROs lack provisions regarding weapon possession or temporary child custody arrangements. These orders remain worthwhile, however, as they limit contact with victims and require alleged harassers to cease problematic treatment.

Ready to file for an OFP or HRO? With strong legal support, these orders could be well within reach. The legal team at the law firm of Barna, Guzy & Steffen, Ltd. takes your safety seriously. We will make every effort to provide the protection you deserve. Contact us today to learn more about your options — and how we can help.