By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq., a NJ Domestic Violence Attorney

In a precedential decision, the New Jersey Courts recently found a woman’s restraining order against her ex-husband to be invalid because it was too overbroad. While the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act authorizes victims of domestic violence in New Jersey to obtain restraining orders against their batterers, the Court held that the Act does not authorize such restraining orders that are so overly broad that they can be hard to enforce at all times. The Appellate Court decision reversed a previous decision enforcing the restraining order by the Trial Court.

The case involved a woman who brought charges in NJ Court against her ex-husband for violating her restraining order against him, stemming from the ex-husband attending their son’s soccer game. The ex-husband attacked the restraining order as being invalid. The NJ Court focused in certain key language in the restraining order, particularly that which prohibited the ex-husband from going near the woman’s home, workplace, and “any other place where [she] is located.”

The Court found this last part to be problematic, stating that this restriction was essentially impossible for the ex-husband to obey at all times, therefore making the restraining order overbroad and thus invalid. In order to be enforced, restraining orders must be properly crafted and avoid overly broad language.
Contact me personally to discuss your NJ Domestic Violence matter. I am easy to talk to, very approachable and can offer you practical, legal ways to handle your concerns. You can reach me toll free at (855) 376-5291 or email me at fniemann@hnlawfirm.com.