Indiana No Contact Orders and Penalties for Violating Them
What is a No Contact Order? (Ind. Code 35-26-5 and 35-26-6)
Courts can impose various forms of No Contact Orders, and they can even be a necessary condition of release on bail. No Contact Orders prevent one from (as the name suggests) contacting another individual, usually in the aftermath of a domestic dispute or other interpersonal conflict. (See Ind. Code 35-33-8-3.6). In the case of a domestic dispute, individuals often do not leave their home with all of their necessary belongings. Because this is often the case, the legal system has long employed a mechanism for retrieval of one’s belongings from a place he/she can no longer legally occupy.
What happens if you violate a No Contact Order? (Ind. Code 35-46-1-15.1 (a)(1-9))
Violation of a No Contact Order is categorized as an invasion of privacy, which is a Class A Misdemeanor. However, if one has a prior unrelated conviction under that same statute, the penalty will be a Level 6 felony. Because of this penalty, a Writ of Assistance can allow one to stay within the bounds of a No Contact Order while retrieving one’s belongings.
Writs of Assistance (Court Order, Ind. T.R. 70(A))
Writs of Assistance are court orders that instruct and direct law enforcement officers to fulfill a certain task. In the case of a domestic dispute involving a No Contact Order described above, a Writ of Assistance is necessary for the person subject to that No Contact Order to get his/her necessary belongings from his/her former residence.
A Writ of Assistance must specifically describe the items that one needs from his/her former residence. For items such as cars or other titled vehicles, documentation describing proof of ownership, such as a title, are required before one can take possession. Importantly, one’s petition for this court order is always subject to the discretion of the court to which the petition is addressed. In Indiana, the process of petitioning a court for a Writ of Assistance varies county by county. It is important to retain counsel to assist one in navigating this process successfully.
Should you need an attorney to help you with fighting or asking for a No Contact Order, contact the attorneys at Banks and Brower for assistance 24/7/365 at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317.870.0019.