Stop Domestic Violence – How to Get Help

By Hoge Fenton | 04.22.2020 | Client Alerts

If you or someone you know has been a victim of domestic violence, don’t delay in getting help. The court system is available for you, even now. Your safety is a priority!

In the U.S, since March 16, 2020, the National Domestic Violence Hotline has received 2,345 calls in which COVID-19 was cited as a condition of abuse, according to Crystal Justice, chief marketing and development officer (source). Even before the pandemic, an average of 20 people in the United States experienced physical domestic violence every minute. Research shows 1 in 4 adult American women and 1 in 7 adult American men have experienced some type of severe violence – including being hit with something hard, being kicked or beaten, or being burned on purpose – at the hands of an intimate partner (source). Domestic abuse can include non-physical abuse, including financial and emotional abuse.

The Santa Clara County, Alameda County and Contra Costa County courts are still open for matters relating to domestic violence and emergency child custody issues.

Here is how to get help if you’re a victim of Domestic Violence:

  • Ensure your safety first. This should involve calling the police and possibly seeking shelter elsewhere. A police officer can initiate a request for short term protective orders (called Emergency Protective Orders).
  • Contact a family law attorney. Whether or not the police have intervened to seek short term emergency orders, you should contact a family law attorney. The family law attorney will submit your application for a domestic violence temporary restraining order (DVTRO) at your local Superior Court, so that a DVTRO can be granted ASAP (usually within 24 hours).
  • Once a DVTRO is ordered, a process server or law enforcement officers will serve the defendant/accused with the order and the date of the initial hearing, which will be scheduled within 21 days after the DVTRO is issued.
  • Your family law attorney will guide you through the rest of the process, as is appropriate for your situation.
  • TROs last until a judge either extends the length of the original TRO, removes it, or replaces it with a permanent restraining order.

Despite COVID-19 related limitations, Hoge Fenton continues to meet new clients and advocate on their behalf. In addition to being highly skilled, Certified Specialists in Family Law, our family law attorneys are integrated with our attorneys in other practice areas. This provides several financial and emotional benefits for our clients, such as:

  • Minimizing your taxes: our attorneys communicate closely with each other to minimize the tax implications of division of property, business, and other assets
  • Crafting a new estate plan for your new situation: we can revoke an existing estate plan and work with our estate planning counsel to implement a new estate plan that is optimized to your situation
  • Protecting your business interests: we structure transactions, distribute business interests (including IP), and assess ongoing litigation
  • Maximizing your real estate outcome: we work through division and sale of real and commercial property during dissolution to asses benefits and pitfalls such as capital gain impacts.

Dealing with domestic violence can be difficult, both emotionally and legally. Please reach out to our experienced Family Law attorneys if you need support.

Michael Bonetto


Certified Family Law Specialist

D: +1.408.947.2468

email here

Natasha Parrett

Chair, Family Law

Certified Family Law Specialist


email here

This information is provided as an educational service by Hoge Fenton for clients and friends of the firm. This communique is an overview only, and should not be construed as legal advice or advice to take any specific action. Please be sure to consult a knowledgeable professional with assistance with your particular legal issue. © 2020 Hoge Fenton

Mackrell International California Minority Counsel Program Best Places to Work 2019 Bay Area Green Business