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No Contact Order: Violation & Consequences

Instructor: Jessica Mercado

I completed my BA in Criminal Justice in 2015. Currently working on my MS in Homeland Security Management.

This lesson will provide a basic overview of different types of no contact orders and the consequences of violating those orders. Examples of different violations will also be covered.

Introduction

You encouraged your friend to file a no contact order against her abusive ex-boyfriend. The ex-boyfriend shows up at her house last evening around 10 PM as you were about to leave. He is yelling at her to open the door. Your friend calls the cops, and once they arrive she hands them the no contact order. The police then haul off her ex-boyfriend.

This is an example of what could happen if someone violates a no contact order. The judge will decide what consequence this violation warrants.

No Contact Orders

A no contact order provides legal protection for those who have fallen victim of any of the following types of situations below.

There are several different types of no contact orders, the situation will determine which one is appropriate to warrant:

  • RCW 26.50-Domestic violence protection orders. (i.e. spouses, boyfriends, girlfriends, roommates, former spouses, former boyfriends/girlfriends, domestic partners, and relations by blood.)
  • RCW 10.14.040- Anti-harassment orders. Substantial emotional distress must be present.
  • RCW 7.90- Sexual assault protection orders. Non-consensual sexual conduct or penetration.
  • RCW 74.34.110- Vulnerable adult protection orders. Adults over 60 years of age who are found unable to take care of themselves in any function.

For the situation in the introduction, your friend would have the protection order RCW 26.50. It is a domestic case since she filed the order against her ex-boyfriend for punching her in the face and breaking her arm.

Violations and Consequences

The violation of a no contact order is a crime. The violator will be held in contempt of court and can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. Fines for a misdemeanor can reach up to $5,000 and up to a year in jail. Violators who receive a misdemeanor charge can also receive community service as a consequence of the violation. The penalties will vary from state-to-state and the seriousness of the situation.

A felony may be charged if the violator assaulted the victim, or if there were two previous violations against the order. If another crime is committed while violating the no contact order, such as carrying a weapon, or breaking and entering, the penalties will become more severe.

Because your friend's ex-boyfriend showed up to her house after she filed the no contact order he was in violation of the order. He will most likely be charged with a misdemeanor because he has no previous violations and he did not come in contact with her.

Other Examples of Violations and Their Consequences.

An employee files a RCW 10.14.040 against his coworker for cyber harassment in the workplace and at home. The coworker continuously violates the order and is sentenced with a felony conviction, $4,500 in fines, and one year in prison.

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