Stalking and no contact orders involve two people who are not related. This means they are not family members, dating, fiancees, married, or roommates. For information on cases dealing with a person with one of these relationships, please refer to the Orders of Protection page in this website. The first party in a stalking and no contact case is called the Petitioner. This is the person who files for the stalking and no contact order against another person they don't have one of the above referenced relationships with. The second person is called the Respondent. The Respondent is the person a Petitioner is accusing of harassing, intimidating, stalking or abusing them. These accusations don't have to be physical, but can be emotional and even financial. For a stalking and no contact order to issue, the Petitioner must state a claim against the Respondent that harm will befall them if it is not granted by a judge.
These types of orders, if granted, can forbid a Respondent from not only communicating with the Petitioner, but also will prevent them from going within a certain distance of the Petitioner's house, work and school. Additionally, a Respondent can be prevented from having another person communicate with the Petitioner for them. This is called a 3rd party communication.
If either one of these parties doesn't appear in court for a court date or have an attorney appear for them, a judgement will be issued in the favor of the party who does appear and against a party who didn't. This means a Petitioner could have their case dismissed against the Respondent if they don't appear in court and the Respondent does. And a Respondent could have a default judgment against them if they don't show up to a court date and the Petitioner does. A default judgement means the court grants the stalking and no contact order against the Respondent for not appearing.
Default judgments can be set aside and the case reinstated, as if the default judgement never happened. However, the Respondent must file a motion to set aside the default judgment within 30 days after it is entered against them and certain criteria must be met by the Respondent in filing this type of motion. Additionally, these cases can be taken to trial. Trials require both the Respondent and Petitioner to know the rules of evidence and civil procedure. If witnesses are required to testify on your behalf, subpoenas must be filed. If introducing evidence at trial is necessary, such as introducing photos, text messages, emails, voicemails or videos, an experienced attorney like Travis Strobach is invaluable to have on your side.
If these orders are granted, the Respondent is subject to criminal charges for violating them. These criminal charges range from a class A misdemeanor to a felony (please refer to the sentencing guidelines for the state you are charged in this websites site map). In Illinois and Missouri there are collateral consequences to having these orders granted against a Respondent, regardless of whether they are charged with a criminal offense or not. Some of the consequences include the loss of being able to possess a firearm.