Restraining Orders

New Mexico law provides for parties to obtain restraining orders. There are different types of restraining orders. One type arises from a criminal case in which the court in a criminal matter prohibits contact with a victim or witness. We won’t discuss this type any further. Another type of restraining order arises under the Rules of Civil Procedure. These types of restraining orders are a precursor to a preliminary injunction.

The way this works is that in a civil context a person files a request for a preliminary injunction. The court issues a temporary restraining order that grants the parties’ request for a period of about 10 days until there is a hearing on whether further relief can be or should be granted.

A third type of restraining order arises in New Mexico under the Family Violence Protection Act. Under the Family Violence Protection Act a person can obtain a restraining order if there was domestic abuse committed on them by a household member. A few important aspects of this type of restraining is important to understand.

First domestic abuse is pretty broadly defined. Domestic abuse isn’t limited to physical abuse as the way most people think of it. Instead, domestic abuse can arise even from fear or extreme emotional distress. Second, a household member also isn’t limited to a person who resides with you. Thus, a boyfriend or girlfriend who you do not live with could also be considered a household member.

The process for a restraining order under the family violence protection act is very similar to a civil restraining order for a preliminary injunction. A person files a petition and then an ex parte order is entered and subsequent to that the parties have a hearing to decide if the order of protection should be granted and extended.

Restraining orders, also known as orders of protection, are a challenging area of law that can impact on many parts of a person’s life. Under the family violence protection act, the court may issue a restraining order along with ordering custody, support and dividing property on a temporary basis. That is why it is important to be prepared and protected.

Our advocates at Justice Legal Group have many years of experience in representing people in restraining order hearings. Contact us for more information on restraining orders by emailing us at or calling us at 505-880-8737.

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