A restraining order is a court order intended to protect people from further harassment or stalking. It is a civil order and does not give the offender a criminal record. However, if a violation of a restraining order occurs, the offender could be arrested. A restraining order can be granted for up to one year.
How do I get a restraining order?
Complete a Complaint and Motion for Restraining Order and submit it to a magistrate's office in the county where you live or where the harassment or stalking has occurred. The form for Richland County, S.C., can be accessed at MV 29 Complaint and Motion for Restraining Order. A hearing will be scheduled for the magistrate to hear from petitioner and defendant. The magistrate will decide whether there is reason to grant a restraining order. If a restraining order is granted, then the defendant will pay the fee associated with the hearing. Otherwise, the petitioner will be responsible for the fee.
The Sexual Assault and Violence Intervention & Prevention office and UofSC police are also available to help coordinate this option.