Court begins at 8:00 a.m. in the Third Sessions Court or (sometimes) in the Large Assembly Room on Main Street.
The hearing will be held approximately five to twelve days after the defendant is served with process; at the hearing, the court will grant or deny a one-year Order of Protection.
The defendant will be served with the process as soon as possible, and will be given notice of the date of hearing. Once the defendant knows that the plaintiff has filed for an order of protection, the plaintiff is protected against the seven forms of abuse. The initial order of protection (ex parte order of protection) can also prohibit the defendant from coming about you, or even from communicating with you, if you so request.
At the hearing the court will listen to both sides and make a ruling.
If you are an unrepresented petitioner (no lawyer is helping you) and you are opposed by a represented respondent, ask the court to provide you with a volunteer lawyer on your trial day.
Bring with you any physical evidence (photos, tape recordings, letters) and any actual witnesses to any of the seven forms of abuse.