By Kathryn L. Dudley
Many people know that if they are being abused, threatened with abuse, or stalked, they can seek an Order of Protection from the court. If granted, these Orders of Protection are typically in effect for at least six months and often up to a year. What happens, however, once the Order of Protection expires? Often, the abused party (the “petitioner”) still fears for his or her safety.
Missouri statutes allow for at least two renewals of the Order of Protection if requested by the petitioner. These renewals may also be in effect for six months or up to a year from the expiration of the original Order of Protection. Significantly, in order for the renewal to be granted, the court is not required to find that there has been any subsequent act of abuse. It is therefore important to note when the Order of Protection expires, and to file a request for an extension of the Order of Protection prior to the expiration of the original Order.