location 1580 N. Northwest Highway, Suite 12, Park Ridge, IL 60068
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George Skuros
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phone 312-884-1222

Chicago Domestic Violence Lawyer

Des Plaines domestic abuse protection lawyer

Chicago Family Law Attorney for Orders of Protection From Domestic Abuse in Cook County

Domestic violence is an issue that affects millions of people throughout the United States, and women, men, and children are all at risk. In Illinois, domestic violence is a factor in many criminal law cases, but it also has a substantial impact on family law cases, especially those involving divorce and the allocation of parental responsibilities.

If you have been the victim of domestic abuse, it is important to understand your legal options for protecting yourself and your children. On the other hand, if you have been accused of domestic violence, it is important to understand all of the possible implications and ensure that your rights are protected. At The Law Office of George J. Skuros, we handle a variety of family law cases that may be influenced by domestic violence, using our decades of experience to help you address this serious legal matter.

Examples of Domestic Violence in Illinois

As defined under Illinois law, domestic violence includes not only physical and sexual abuse, but also many other forms of harmful behavior, including:

  • Harassment, stalking, and surveillance
  • Intimidation and threats of physical force
  • Interference with personal liberty, including forced confinement or conduct
  • Willful deprivation of food, shelter, medical care, and other needs

Domestic violence can occur between any members of a family or household, but it is most common between intimate partners. Children are also often affected by domestic abuse, either as victims or witnesses.

Seeking an Order of Protection

If you or your child has been the victim of any form of domestic abuse, you have the right to petition the court for an order of protection, and your attorney can help you prepare your affidavit and supporting evidence regarding the abuse and your need for protection. If you are in immediate danger of further abuse, you can petition for an emergency order that takes effect without prior notice to the person from whom you are seeking protection, and this type of order may last for up to three weeks.

Otherwise, you will need to serve notice of the petition to the person, after which the court will schedule a hearing, and an interim protection order will take effect for up to 30 days. If the court finds at the hearing that there is reason for continued protection, an emergency or interim order can be extended to a plenary order that lasts for up to two years.

Protection orders are enforced by local law enforcement, and they can provide many different forms of relief depending on the circumstances. The person named in the order will be required to refrain from any further acts of abuse against you or your child, and they may be prohibited from contacting you and ordered to stay away from you, your place of work, your child's school, and other specified locations. In some cases, an order of protection may also temporarily grant you exclusive possession of your residence and other property, child and spousal support, and exclusive parenting time and parental decision-making responsibilities. Violating any terms of an order of protection can have serious consequences, including misdemeanor or felony charges.

Domestic Violence, Divorce, and Child Custody

Often, a petition for an order of protection from a spouse is filed along with a petition for divorce. It is important to note that these are separate legal matters, and the terms of the protection order regarding property and child custody will not necessarily reflect the terms of the divorce order. However, during the divorce process, evidence of domestic violence will be considered when determining the final allocation of parenting time and parental responsibilities. A parent who has been accused of domestic abuse could find their parenting time and responsibilities severely restricted.

Domestic Violence FAQs


What Is the Sentence for Domestic Battery in Illinois?

Answer: In most cases, people convicted of domestic battery in Illinois will face up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.


What Is the Statute of Domestic Assault in Illinois?

Answer: In Illinois, a person can be convicted of a domestic battery if they knowingly cause bodily harm to or make provoking or insulting physical contact with a member of their family or household and do not have a legal justification for doing so.


What Is the Violence Against Women Act in Illinois?

Answer: The Illinois Violence Against Women Act is designed to protect women and others who have experienced intimate partner violence, family violence, sexual assault, or stalking. People of all ages and genders can enjoy the act’s protections. Among other things, VAWA provides services to survivors of these crimes and guides police and prosecutors.


What Is a Domestic Violence Enhancer?

Answer: Certain circumstances can elevate the seriousness of the offense when a person is charged with domestic violence, leading to sentencing enhancements. For example, if the victim was severely injured or if the offender used a weapon, these factors might result in enhanced sentencing.


What Happens if a Domestic Violence Victim Does Not Show up for Court?

Answer: The prosecutor is likely to press charges on behalf of the victim anyway. This can even be done over the victim’s objections. However, the charges may be less likely to result in a conviction without the cooperation of the victim.


Can You Get a Gun With a Domestic Violence Charge in Illinois?

Answer: In Illinois, people who have ever been convicted of domestic violence can have their Firearm Owner Identification taken away from them. This means they cannot legally own a gun in Illinois, and they should be prevented from purchasing one by firearm sellers.


What Is a Civil No Contact Order in Illinois?

Answer: A civil no contact order may provide victims of certain offenses, such as stalking or harassment, with many of the same protections provided to people who qualify for domestic violence restraining orders. The offender does not need to be arrested or charged for a victim to obtain a no contact order.


How Does a Restraining Order Work in Illinois?

Answer: An order of protection can prohibit a perpetrator of domestic violence or similar offenses from contacting the victim or going to a place where the victim is likely to be, such as their home or workplace. A protective order can also impose a variety of other restrictions and requirements meant to protect the safety and well-being of domestic violence victims and their family members. This order has the force of law, and the perpetrator can be arrested for violating it. Orders of protection can be issued by a civil court in a process initiated by the victim or by a criminal court during an ongoing prosecution.


How Can a Domestic Violence Lawyer Help Me?

Answer: A domestic violence attorney can take a number of actions to help you. First, they can file for a civil restraining order on your behalf. This is likely to have the effect of forcing your abuser out of your home and preventing them from contacting you in any way. A domestic violence attorney can also help you divorce or separate from the offender and ensure that you and your children will be protected throughout the legal process.

Contact a Cook County Family Law Attorney

If you need an order of protection for yourself or your child, or if you need legal representation in a divorce case involving domestic violence, we can help. Contact us today at 312-884-1222 to schedule a free consultation. We serve clients throughout Cook County and the surrounding areas, including Chicago, Schaumburg, Inverness, Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Mount Prospect, Park Ridge, and the North Shore.

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