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Under state law, employers can ask the courts to implement Oakland workplace violence restraining orders to protect their employees. These orders can have substantial repercussions for the subjects of these orders. Working with legal counsel may be the only effective way to contest these orders and prevent their adverse impact on your life.

Once these orders are in place, any violation of them can result in criminal charges. You may end up with a permanent criminal conviction on your record that will appear in background checks. An experienced lawyer may be able to defend you against these potential outcomes.

What Are Workplace Violence Restraining Orders?

Under the California Code of Civil Procedure § 527.8, employers may file for a workplace violence restraining order to protect their employees if unlawful violence or a credible threat of violence from any individual is carried out at the workplace. Unlawful violence consists of assault, battery, or stalking. In contrast, a credible threat of violence is an intentional statement or course of conduct that serves no legitimate purpose and would reasonably cause people to fear for their safety or the safety of their immediate family members. A course of conduct consists of a pattern of actions over time that indicates a continuity of purpose.

Employers can seek temporary workplace violence restraining orders in Oakland on behalf of a specific employee or multiple employees, even if they work at a different location. The court can issue these temporary orders ex parte, meaning without notice to the subject of the restraining order, or following notice and hearing to the other parties.

Workplace violence restraining orders cannot address actions that are part of a legitimate labor dispute or that are constitutionally protected activities. However, these restraining orders can include the following provisions:

  • Prohibitions on harassing, intimidating, molesting, threatening, stalking, or telephoning employees
  • Bans on abusing, attacking, striking, or destroying the personal property of employees
  • Orders to refrain from directly or indirectly contacting employees
  • Prohibitions on coming within a specific distance or disturbing the peace of employees

Judges can also include specific provisions in these restraining orders that address behaviors that individuals might take to carry out one or more of the prohibited actions. These temporary restraining orders typically remain in place for no more than 21 days, or up to 25 days if the judge extends the time for the hearing. After a hearing is held, the restraining order can remain in place for a maximum of three years.

The Effects of Workplace Violence Restraining Orders

Individuals accused of workplace violence may become subject to these restraining orders without notice and before a hearing is held. Therefore, a judge may issue restraining orders for workplace violence in Oakland based on the allegations of employers without hearing from the accused persons. The imposition of this type of order can cause persons to lose various rights, such as the right to possess firearms and to be at certain locations.

Being subject to a restraining order may also make it difficult to maintain certain jobs and careers, and could impact custody and visitation arrangements for minor children, depending on the circumstances. As a result, people who are subject to restraining orders need to be wholly aware of the restrictions that the orders may place on them and the penalties if they violate them.

Individuals who violate workplace violence restraining orders are subject to arrest and criminal charges. Violating a restraining order is a misdemeanor offense that can result in a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of up to $1,000. If the violation results in physical injuries, then the potential penalties may increase to a minimum 30-day jail sentence and a $2,000 fine.

Discuss Workplace Violence Restraining Orders with an Oakland Attorney

When you are facing a restraining order that can significantly impact your job, movement, and freedom, you may wish to get legal advice right away. Oakland workplace violence restraining orders can have severe consequences that can leave you with a criminal record and adversely affect your job and financial situation. By obtaining a dedicated attorney when you need it most, you may be in a better position to fight back against the order. Call today to learn more.

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