How To Get A Restraining Order In Namibia

How To Get A Restraining Order In Namibia

What is Restraining Order?

A restraining order or protective order, abbreviated PFA, is an order used by a court to protect a person, object, business, company, state, country, establishment, or entity, and the general public, in a situation involving alleged domestic violence, child abuse, assault, harassment, stalking, or sexual assault. In the United States, every state has some form of domestic violence restraining order law, and many states also have specific restraining order laws for stalking and sexual assault. [Wikipedia]

Overview of Restraining Order/ Protective Order in Namibia

The issuance of protection orders in Namibia is governed by the Combating of Domestic Violence Act, 2003 (Namibia 2003, Part II). The Act states that “[a]ny person who is in a domestic relationship […] may apply for a protection order against another person in that domestic relationship” (Namibia 2003, Art. 4.1). Sources explain that a protection order may be obtained if a person in such a domestic relationship has been abused or threatened with abuse (NPA et al. 2012, 58; LAC 2007, 17). According to the Namibian Legal Assistance Centre (LAC), who helped to draft the Act, protection orders can serve as an alternative to criminal charges in cases of domestic violence, although protection orders may be sought at the same time as criminal charges are laid (LAC 2010).

How To Get A Restraining Order In Namibia

In the Namibia, a restraining order is only issued in combination with criminal proceedings. Therefore, to obtain one, you will need to report the assailant to the police and take them to court for their crimes. A restraining order can still be issued if the attacker is not found guilty or is acquitted of the offence

  1. The application must include a sworn affidavit and may include evidence such as witness testimony and medical reports
  2. The magistrate will examine the application and evidence to decide whether the issuance of a protection order is warranted (NPA et al. 2012, 56). 
  3. An interim protection order will be issued until a hearing is held (ibid., 59; LAC 2007, 20). A final protection order may be issued after the hearing (NPA et al. 2012, 59; LAC 2007, 26). According to the NPA manual, a copy of the protection order is sent to the relevant police station by the clerk of the court, so that police protection can be provided if necessary (NPA et al. 2012, 59). A copy will also be sent to the ministry responsible for child welfare if children are involved (ibid.).

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a restraining order and a protection order?

A victim of domestic abuse can obtain an order of protection against their abuser. An ex parte order of protection is a temporary measure that can be filed quickly. A full protection order, or restraining order, is granted after a court hearing and lasts for a longer period of time than the ex parte order.

Does a restraining order ruin your life?

Even if the restraining order goes on your record, it likely won’t affect your current or future employment. Most employers who conduct background checks only check for the most serious crimes. It costs more to search for every possible crime a person might have committed.

What happens when you get a restraining order against someone?

A violation of a restraining order will often result in arrest, and is a criminal offense. If there is a restraining order against you, but the person who filed the order repeatedly tries to have contact with you, you may go to court to ask the judge to vacate the restraining order.

What happens when you get an order of protection?

What happens if the police arrest my abuser? There will be a hearing to decide if your abuser disobeyed the Order of Protection. Before the hearing, your abuser may get out of jail on bond. The judge can also send him to jail for up to 10 days.

Does an order of protection stay on your record?

When you get a Civil Protection Order against someone, the order by itself does not give that person a permanent criminal record. Only if your perpetrator violates the order is it a criminal offense. 7.

What evidence is needed for an order of protection in Namibia?

You have to sign an affidavit about what your abuser has done to you. An affidavit is a form that you swear is true and sign in front of a notary or a Judge. If the court finds you are in danger of harm, you will first get a Temporary Order of Protection. Then a hearing will be set.

How long is a order of protection in Namibia?

A final order of protection may last up to 5 years, depending on the facts of your specific case. Usually the order will be granted for up to 2 years but if the judge determines that one or more “aggravating circumstances” exist, you can request that your order last for up to 5 years.

How do you fight a false order of protection in Namibia?

Consult with a family law attorney experienced in defending people against false restraining orders. You must go to court for the final restraining order hearing and present your evidence proving why the accusations against you are false. The evidence can be police reports, witnesses, text messages and or emails.

Can I sue for false protective order?

A false restraining order can be more damaging than just restricting your access to your loved ones. If you’ve been falsely accused, you should sue for a false restraining order to protect your reputation and eliminate the risk of a dent in your future employment prospects.

Will a restraining order affect military career in Namibia?

Will my service be affected? Discharge: Having a civil protection order issued by a civil court against the alleged abuser is not grounds for military discharge. But, if the alleged abuser is convicted of a “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence,” it may impact the length of their service and ability to re-enlist.

Can you take a restraining order off someone?

If you’ve obtained a protection order, either you or the respondent can apply to the Family Court to have the order cancelled (“discharged”). If an order is discharged against the respondent, the order will no longer apply for the benefit of a specified protected person or against an associated respondent.

Can the police issue a restraining order in Namibia?

If the police charge your abuser and the case goes to the criminal courts then the court may make a restraining order to protect you. The criminal court can make the restraining order whether or not your abuser is convicted (found guilty).

Why would a narcissist put a restraining order on you?

A real restraining order is sought by someone who genuinely wants to protect themself and fears the other party will do them harm. A Revenge Restraining Order is something an abusive person seeks to hurt the other person, knowing inwardly no court order is really needed to stop the person they are trying to harm

What happens after a protection order is served?

If the respondent breaches the Protection Order they will be arrested and cannot be bailed out by the Police for 24 hours. The respondent can then face a maximum penalty of imprisonment of up to three years or they can be fined. It is the Police’s policy to arrest the respondent if they breach the Order at any stage.

Do I need an attorney for a restraining order?

No, you do not need a lawyer to file for a civil anti-harassment order. However, you may wish to have a lawyer, especially if the abuser has a lawyer and/or if your case is going to go to trial. If you can, contact a lawyer to make sure that your legal rights are protected.

Do protection orders show up on background checks?

Typically, restraining orders are civil, which means they shouldn’t show on a criminal background check.

How long are emergency protective orders good for?

The Emergency Protective Order goes into effect immediately and is good for seven (7) calendar days or five (5) business days, whichever is shorter. The Emergency Protective Order is intended to provide protection long enough for the requestor to file an application for a Domestic Violence Restraining Order in court.

Can you defend a protection order?

To defend (“respond to”) the protection order application, you will need to fill out forms and file them at the Family Court. You can ask people to be your witnesses in court, to give evidence supporting your defence. You can also arrange to bring a support person to the hearing.

Does a protection order stay on your record in Namibia?

If a final protection order is granted, the clerk of the court must provide certified copies of the protection order to the relevant police station, the complainant and the respondent. A final protection order remains valid until it is set aside or cancelled by court.

How does a protection order work in Namibia?

A protection order aims at preventing the reoccurrence of domestic violence or sexual harassment by stating what conduct the alleged offender must refrain from doing. As long as he/she complies with the protection order, the complainant will be safe.

What are the requirements of a protection order?

You have to sign an affidavit about what your abuser has done to you. An affidavit is a form that you swear is true and sign in front of a notary or a Judge. If the court finds you are in danger of harm, you will first get a Temporary Order of Protection. Then a hearing will be set.