My wife filed a protective order against me. What does a protective order prohibit me to do? Is it the same thing as a restraining order, and can I fight it?

The terms “injunction against abuse,” “criminal order of protection,” “restraining order,” and “protective order” are all terms used interchangeably; however, a protective order generally refers to family abuse and domestic assault and battery in Virginia. Whereas, a restraining order can be filed by anyone claiming another person is harassing them.

If you have a protective order against you, it most likely requires that you stay away from your spouse and not conduct the acts that were complained of and mentioned in the court order. Other things the protective order may prohibit you from doing include:

  • No spousal contact of any kind, including phone calls
  • Not being able to contact your spouse at work, home, or by accident
  • Not being allowed back into your home
  • Not being able to use your jointly owned vehicle
  • Not being able to temporarily see your children
  • Removal of any firearms from the home


An Order of Protection is a legal restraint that serves to protect the person who filed it. Some family abuse orders can include providing child support, maintaining the utilities for the home, attending counseling, and more.

If you have a temporary protective order in Virginia issued against you, you need to deal with it immediately by getting the help of an experienced Northern Virginia criminal defense attorney. This means that you need to make sure you are prepared to defend your side of the story by the hearing date.

A skilled defense attorney can help you prepare your testimony, present evidence to show that your spouse isn’t telling the truth, or investigate to determine what your best defense strategy may be in order to fight the charges. Talk with a Fairfax criminal defense lawyer at the Taylor Law Company at 888-209-6631 or 703-385-5529 for a free consultation today.