Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

Law

Summary of New York State Domestic Violence and Related Laws by Subject (beginning from 1995)

Subject Categories

Orders Of Protection
Translation of Orders of Protection – A.3005-C/S.2005-C

This law requires translation of temporary or final orders of protection, when needed, in all Family Courts and Supreme Courts Each of New York’s judicial districts must translate the ten languages most frequently used in their own district, using the following schedule:

  • three languages by January 1, 2018
  • three more languages by June 30, 2019
  • final four languages by December 31, 2020

The law also creates two important pilot projects. In the first, one town or village court within each judicial district will develop best practices for language assistance for orders of protection in justice courts.  In the second, one county within New York City and two outside NYC will develop best practices for language assistance for orders of protection in their criminal courts.  The Chief Administrator of the Courts must consult with stakeholders and evaluate both pilot projects, and provide a plan for their expansion throughout the state.

Signed: Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: Part BB
Effective: July 19, 2017
Amends: Judiciary Law §212(2) – new paragraphs (t) and (t-1); Family Court Act - new §169; Domestic Relations Law §240(3) – new paragraph (a-1); Domestic Relations Law §252 – new subdivision 1-a; Family Court Act §214(b)(ii)(2) closing paragraph

Temporary Orders of Protection – A.6262 Joyner/S.6 Young

Establishes a pilot program in several Family Courts to allow the electronic filing of petitions and issuing of temporary orders of protection by audio-visual means.   This will provide emergency relief for victims who find traveling to, or appearing in, the courthouse, an undue hardship or a risk to their safety.

Signed: October 21, 2015 Chapter 367

Effective: April 1, 2016

Amends: Family Court Act §153-c; Judiciary Law §212(2) new paragraph (t); Executive Law §648

Orders of Protection in Sexual Assault/Probation Sentences- A.1797-A Paulin/ S.4340-B Serino

Establishes the maximum length of an order of protection in sexual assault cases where the sentence is, or includes, probation.  The maximum length of an order issued in criminal felony sexual assault convictions, including cases where the defendant and victim are family/household members, is fixed at ten years. In misdemeanor sexual assault convictions the maximum length of an order of protection will be fixed at six years. This corrects an inconsistency created when the law was changed in 2006 to extend the permissible duration of orders of protection in all crimes.  Prior to 2006, the law already required longer probation sentences for sexual assault convictions. Without the correction, orders of protection could have expired before a defendant had completed a probation sentence.

Signed: September 22, 2015   Chapter 240

Effective: October 22, 2015

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(5); 530.13(4)

Increased Maximum Length of Criminal Orders of Protection – Extension

Extends for two more years, until September 1, 2017, the increased maximum length of criminal court orders of protection. Maximum lengths: eight years for a felony conviction, five years for a misdemeanor conviction and two years for all other offenses/violations.

Signed: 2015 Chapter 55 – Budget Bill: §19 of Part B

Effective: April 13, 2015

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(5); 530.13(4)

Final Orders of Protection at Sentencing (A.88 Paulin/S.1428 Saland)

Amends the Criminal Procedure Law to clarify that a final order of protection will be issued at sentencing, rather than conviction. Any temporary order issued in the case will remain in effect until the final order is issued at sentencing.

Signed: 2011 Chapter 9

Effective: May 13, 2011

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(5); 530.13(4) and (5)

Family Court Extension of Orders of Protection (A.6195-A Weinstein/S. 2972-A Sampson)

Authorizes Family Court to extend a current order of protection for a reasonable period of time, upon a showing of good cause or consent of the parties. The fact that abuse has not occurred while the order has been in effect cannot, in itself, constitute sufficient ground for denying, or failing to extend, the order. The new law requires the court to state the basis for its decision on the record.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 325

Effective: August 13, 2010

Amends: Family Court Act §842

Electronic Transmission of Orders of Protection (A.10410 Rosenthal/S.7289 Sampson)

Allows Family Courts and Supreme Courts to fax or electronically transmit temporary and final orders of protection, and any accompanying papers, to local police agencies for service on respondents. This will allow for easier and faster service of orders from Family Court and in matrimonial cases.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 261

Effective: July 30, 2010

Amends: Family Court Act §153-b and Domestic Relations Law §§240 & 252

Police Service of Orders of Protection, Extensions and Violations (A.11100 Weinstein/S.8058 Hassell-Thompson)

Requires police officers to serve, or provide for the service of, temporary and permanent orders of protection, and any accompanying papers. The requirement also applies to extensions, modifications and violations of orders. The law extends the previous prohibition against charging fees for service of these additional orders. If service cannot be completed, the officer must provide to the court proof of attempted service, including the manner in which the service was attempted.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 446

Effective: August 30, 2010

Amends: Family Court Act §153-b; Domestic Relations Law §240(3-a)
Orders of Protection Based on Non-Contemporaneous Acts (A.8393-A Weinstein/S.5696-A Sampson)

Prohibits Family Courts or Supreme Courts from dismissing a petition or denying an order of protection solely on the basis that the acts or events alleged are not relatively recent. The law also states that the duration of a temporary order cannot, by itself, be a factor in issuing or determining the length of a final order.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 341

Effective: August 13, 2010

Amends: Family Court Act §446

Witness Orders of Protection/Juvenile Delinquency Cases (A.1870-A Pheffer/S.5421 Sampson)

Authorizes the Family Court to issue an order of protection for a witness in a juvenile delinquency proceeding, if the court makes a finding that the respondent has previously intimidated or attempted to intimidate the witness, or is likely to do so in the future.

Signed: 2010 Chapter 421

Effective: November 28, 2010

Creates: Family Court Act §352.3(1-a)

2009 Omnibus Domestic Violence Bill (A.9017 Weinstein/S.5031-A Hassell Thompson)

Makes numerous changes to various state laws, including:

  • provides greater protections to victims by adding the length of incarceration to the maximum expiration date previously allowed for orders of protections issued in misdemeanor and violation cases
  • requires judges to state on the record how domestic violence and/or child abuse were factored into custody and visitation decisions
  • strengthens domestic violence training requirements for attorneys for children (law guardians)
  • requires law enforcement to forward domestic incident reports to probation and parole officers
  • provides for certain violation-level harassment convictions to remain unsealed and accessible to law enforcement, thereby, providing a more complete history of abuse – multiple sections/effective dates
  • protects victims of sexual assault committed by a family or household member by designating certain low-level sexual assault crimes as family offenses, requiring that mandatory arrest provisions apply and allowing victims to petition Family Court for orders of protection, which would be required to be filed with the statewide registry

Signed: 2009 Chapter 476

Effective: December 19, 2009, except for multiple unsealed convictions provisions, which have varying effective dates

Amends: Family Court Act §§249-b; 812; 821

Domestic Relations Law §240

Criminal Procedure Law §§530.11; 140.10; 160.55; 170.10; 530.12; 530.13

Orders of Protection/Pets - Amendment (A.8855-A Rosenthal/S.4541-A Kruger)

Amends the 2006 law that authorized the inclusion of companion animals or pets in criminal or family court orders of protection to now include orders issued in Supreme Court matrimonial cases. In addition, the new law changes the language referring to “petitioner” to read “the person protected by the order” in orders of protection issued under sections of the Family Court Act where the government or prosecutor, rather than the victim, petitions the court (i.e., child support, juvenile delinquency, etc.).

Signed: 2008 Chapter 532

Effective: July 6, 2008

Amends: Family Court Act §352.3(1)

Orders of Protection/Pets (S.7691 Padavan/A.10767-A Rosenthal)

Allows protection of companion animals to be added to an order of protection issued in a criminal court or Family Court. Requires the respondent to refrain from intentionally injuring or killing any companion animal the respondent knows to be owned, possessed, leased, kept or held by the petitioner or a minor child living in the household. Companion animals/pets are defined as a dog, cat or any other domesticated animal that lives in or near the household, but does not include farm animals.

Signed: 2006 Chapter 253

Effective: July 26, 2006

Amends: Family Court Act §§352.3(1); 446(h); 551(i); 656(i); 759(h); 842(i); 1056(1)(g)

Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(1)(f); 530.13(1)(b); 530.13(4)(b)

Orders of Protection/Supervision or Detention (A.9806-C/S.6806-C)

Requires criminal and family courts to provide a copy of an order of protection to the state or local correctional or jail facility where a defendant/respondent will be detained or to the supervising probation department or Division of Parole. The new law also provides probation officers with access to the domestic violence order of protection registry, subject to appropriate confidentiality laws.

Signed: 2008 Chapter 56

Effective: April 1, 2008

Amends: Budget bill, Part D: creates a new Correction Law §601(e)

Fees for Service of Orders of Protection ( A.7370 Hyer-Spencer/S.4020 Volker)

Prohibits sheriffs from charging a victim to serve an order of protection, or any additional papers that accompany the order (custody, child support, etc.)

Signed: 2007 Chapter 36

Effective: May 21, 2007 Chapter 36

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §8011(h)

Temporary Orders of Protection With a Securing Order (A.8193 Weinstein/S.4538 Kruger)

Allows a criminal court to issue a temporary order of protection when a securing order is issued and a defendant is committed to the custody of the sheriff. This provision would prevent a jailed defendant from communicating with a victim by telephone, mail, or other means.

Signed: 2007 Chapter 45

Effective: July 1, 2007

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§530.12(1); 530.13(1)

Orders of Conditions - Amendment (A.10974 Eddington/S.7176 Flanagan)

Amends the 2003 law that allows a judge to issue an "order of conditions" in criminal cases where a defendant is found not responsible by reason of mental disease/defect. The amendment addresses domestic violence concerns, including, clearer guidance to law enforcement agencies and a mandate that special orders of conditions be filed with local law enforcement agencies and be entered into the statewide order of protection registry.

Signed: 2004 Chapter 107

Effective: June 8, 2004

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§140.10(4)(b); 330.20(1)(o); 330.20(2); 330.20(7-a); 330.20(22)

Executive Law §221-a

Order of Conditions (A.6895-A Eddington/S.2970-A Flanagan)

Allows a judge to issue an "order of conditions," with stay-away language similar to an order of protection, in criminal cases where a defendant is found not responsible by reason of mental disease/defect. The order can cover family and household members, as defined by the judge, and may be filed with the sheriff or local police department.*

Signed: 2003 Chapter 525

Effective: September 17, 2003

* The Governor signed this bill with the understanding that the Legislature will pass a chapter amendment during the next session to make additional changes that will improve the effectiveness of the law. The amendment will require that these orders of conditions be placed on the NYS Order of Protection and Warrant Registry and be filed with the sheriff or local police department. A violation of these orders will also become subject to mandatory arrest provisions.

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§330.20(1)(o); 330.20(2); 330.20(7-a); 330.20(22)

Family Court Orders of Protection/ Maximum Length Extended (A.8923-A Paulin/S.5532 Saland)

Extends the maximum length that orders of protection can be granted in Family Court from 1 to 2 years, and from 3 to 5 years, if aggravating circumstances exist (such as a violation of a current order of protection).

Signed: 2003 Chapter 579

Effective: October 22, 2003

Amends: Family Court Act §842

Orders of Protection/Statewide Registry (A.11193 Weinstein/S.7479 Volker)

Requires Criminal Courts to enter into the NYS order of protection registry any order of protection issued to domestic violence victims under section 530.13 of the Criminal Procedure Law. This will include intimate partners (as described in the "family/household member" definition in section 459-a of the Social Services Law).

Signed: 2002 Chapter 462

Effective: November 18, 2002

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §530.13(5)

Executive Law §221-a(1) and (2)

Orders of Protection/Explanation (A.7248 Weinstein/S.3734 Saland)

Requires a criminal court judge to state on the record the reasons for issuing or not issuing an order of protection in cases where the defendant had pled guilty or been convicted, including cases where a temporary order had been issued.

Signed: 2001 Chapter 384

Effective: November 1, 2001

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §530.12(5)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.13(4)

Supreme Court Orders of Protection – Effective Date (A.10427 Weinstein / S.6760 Saland)

Moves up the effective date of the 1999 law (Chapter 606) which implemented a number of technical changes in the Domestic Relations Law, governing matrimonial proceedings in Supreme Court. The original effective date is changed from November 1, 2000 to September 20, 2000.

Signed: 2000 Chapter 483

Effective: September 20, 2000

Amends: unconsolidated law – section 3 of Chapter 606 of the Laws of 1999

Supreme Court Orders of Protection (A.7707 Weinstein/S.3985-A Saland)

Implements a number of technical changes in the Domestic Relations Law, which governs matrimonial proceedings in Supreme Court. A victim requesting a temporary order of protection must be heard on the same day or the next day the court is in session.

Additionally, upon issuing an order of protection, a temporary order or upon violation of an order, the court may direct the surrender of firearms, revoke or suspend a firearms license or prohibit future eligibility for a firearms license.

Signed: 1999 Chapter 606

Effective: November 1, 2000

Amends: Domestic Relations Law §§240(3); 252(8) and (9)

Enforcement of Out-of-State Orders of Protection (A.11051-A Weinstein/S.7589-A Balboni)

Conforms state law to the federal Violence Against Women Act, which requires rigorous interstate enforcement of orders of protection in domestic violence cases. The law provides that a valid order of protection or temporary order of protection issued by an out-of-state court, or territorial or tribal jurisdiction, must be enforced as if it were a New York State order. Provides for the filing of out-of-state orders on the statewide registry of orders of protection and warrants, but does not require such orders to be on the registry in order to be enforced.

Signed: 1998 Chapter 597

Effective: December 22, 1998

Amends: Domestic Relations Law §§240(3); 240(3-c); 252(4); 252(7)

Family Court Act §§154-c(3); 154-e; 842-a(3); 846(b)(ii); 846-a

Criminal Procedure Law §§140.10(4)(b); 530.11(5); 530.12(11); 530.14(3)

Penal Law §§120.14(3); 215.51(b), (c), and (d); 215.52

Executive Law §221-a(1), (2) and (3)

Witness Orders of Protection (A.11092 Katz/S.6785 Balboni)

Provides that a court may issue an order of protection for a witness, following the conviction of a defendant.

Signed: 1998 Chapter 610

Effective: October 6, 1998

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §530.12(5)(a)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.13(4)(a)

Extension of Temporary Orders of Protection (A.6442-A Katz/S.3208-A Skelos)

Clarifies that in cases where the court has issued a temporary order of protection ex parte or with a warrant for the arrest of a defendant, the order remains in effect until the defendant appears in court.

Signed: 1997 Chapter 589

Effective: September 17, 1997

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §530.12(4)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.13(3)

Clarification of Orders of Protection in Registry (A.10539-A Weinstein/S.6028-A Saland)

Clarifies that all criminal court orders of protection between family/household members must be entered into the statewide order of protection registry, not just those involving family offenses.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 511

Effective: November 6, 1996

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §§140.10(4)(a); 530.12(1)

Stronger Penalties for Orders of Protection Violations (A.11276 John/S.7930 Hoblock)

This law expands the acts that will constitute criminal contempt in the first degree (E felony), when committed in violation of an Order of Protection, to include the following:

  • intentionally placing or attempting to place a person in reasonable fear of physical injury by possession or threat of a weapon, by a course of conduct or repeated behavior over a period of time, or by mechanical/electronic communication, telephone, telegraph or mail;
  • Harassment, by making repeated telephone calls or by threatening or actually striking, kicking, shoving, or other physical contact; and
  • physically menacing.

The law also increases the penalty for violations of an Order of Protection when the violating behavior causes physical injury, constituting the new crime of Aggravated Criminal Contempt, a D felony.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 353

Effective: September 1, 1996

Amends: Penal Law §215.51(b) §215.52

Youthful Offender Orders in NYS Registry (A.10538 John/S.6534-B Saland)

The Family Protection and Domestic Violence Intervention Act of 1994 exempted orders of protection issued against Youthful Offenders from being entered into the NYS order of protection registry. This law removes the exemption, adding orders of protection and temporary orders of protection against Youthful Offenders to the statewide order of protection registry.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 217

Effective: June 25, 1996

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §720.35(2)

Modification of Forms Requirement (A.10540 Klein/S.6023 Saland)

Civil Practice Law and Rules require papers served or filed to be on 8 1/2 x 11 paper. The new law exempts orders of protection and temporary orders of protection, which are on 8 1/2 x 14 paper, from this requirement in order to facilitate their transmission into the statewide order of protection registry.

Signed: 1996 Chapter 131

Effective: June 11, 1996

Amends: Criminal Procedure Law §2101(a)

Improved Service of Orders of Protection (S.3475-A Saland/A.6823 Stringer)

Facilitates service of orders of protection in matrimonial and family court proceedings:

  • creates alternative to court delivery to the central headquarters of police agencies, by allowing petitioner to personally deliver temporary order of protection to law enforcement personnel
  • adds O/Ps issued upon default, to delivery and service provisions in Family Court Act and Domestic Relations Law
  • requires Sheriffs, city, town and village police to make service
  • requires date and time of service to be entered on statewide registry of O/Ps and warrants
  • provides that same service provisions be available for TOP's and default O/Ps issued in Supreme Court

Signed: 1995 Chapter 429

Effective: October 1, 1995

Amends: Family Court Act §153-b(c) and (d)

Domestic Relations Law §240(3-a)

Out-of-State Service of Process for Orders of Protection (S.3953-A Saland/A.6826 John)

Establishes long-arm jurisdiction for orders of protection in domestic violence cases. Authorizes service of process outside NYS in family offense, child support, paternity, custody and guardianship, child abuse and neglect proceedings, where an O/P is sought if:

  • the acts occurred in NYS
  • the applicant for the order resides or is domiciled in NYS, or has substantial contacts in NYS, including presence on a regular basis
  • if non-resident respondent fails to appear, the court may, on its own motion or request of any party, proceed to a hearing on the issuance of an O/P

Signed: 1995 Chapter 441

Effective: October 31, 1995

Amends: Family Court Act §154(c)

Criminal Procedure Law §302(b)

Interstate Deterrence of Mutual Orders of Protection (S.4025-B Saland/A.6827-A Weinstein)

To further limit the abuse of mutual orders and to make NYS law consistent with the Violence Against Women Act "full faith and credit" requirements for interstate enforcement of orders:

  • any complainant seeking an order of protection must serve and file a petition or counterclaim
  • Family Court and Supreme Court must make a finding on the record regarding the petitioner or counter-claimant's entitlement to an order of protection

Signed: 1995 Chapter 538

Effective: October 31, 1995

Amends: Family Court Act §154-b

Domestic Relations Law §240(3)

Revised Conditions for Orders of Protection (S.4987-A Saland/A.6830-A Weinstein)

Redefines permissible terms and conditions in orders of protection in family court, matrimonial and criminal cases:

  • adds uniform language to the condition directing an individual to stay away from a party, a child or other member of the household -- makes Family Court Act and Domestic Relations Law consistent with Criminal Procedure Law, directing a party to "stay away from the home, school or place of employment"
  • visitation language is expanded to persons other than parents
  • current "offensive conduct" language is made more specific:
    • "refrain from committing a family offense.. or any criminal offense... or from harassing, intimidating or threatening such persons"
    • "give proper attention to the home" is eliminated; replaced by new condition -- party out of the home can retrieve belongings, accompanied by a police officer
    • "acts of commission or omission that tend to make the home not a proper place" is replaced by new condition -- "to refrain from acts of commission or omission that create an unreasonable risk to the health, safety or welfare of a child"

Signed: 1995 Chapter 483

Effective: November 1, 1995

Amends: Domestic Relations Law §§240(3)(1)–(5); 240(3)(7)

Family Court Act §§446(a)–(e); 446(h); 551(a)–(e); 551(i); 656(a)–(e); 656(i); 759(a)–(e); 759(h); 842(a)–(e);

842(i); 1056(1)(a)–(e); 1056(1)(g)

Criminal Procedure Law §530.12(1)(b), (c), (d) and (e)1213