Restraining Order Defense In Massachusetts

Law, Practice and Commentary

By Gregory A. Hession J.D.

Here is the first book for Massachusetts lawyers that will show you how to defend against a Chapter 209A restraining order. It is heavy on strategy, tactics, samples of witness examinations, and traps for the unwary.

Someone starting to learn restraining order defense will find all the basics here, which so many books skip. It also contains deep analysis of the key appellate cases and concepts for advanced evidentiary hearings and appeals.



Restraining Order Defense In Massachusetts

Law, Practice and Commentary

Introduction and Quick Start Guide – Is Your Client the Victim of a Wrongly Obtained Restraining Order? ♢ 1
Part I – What You MUST Know About Restraining Order Politics ♢ 9
Chapter 1 What You must Know about Massachusetts Restraining Orders. ♢ 11
Chapter 2 The “Iron Triangle” of Family Law. ♢ 21
Chapter 3 What Happens to a Restraining Order Defendant; Why fight? ♢ 35
Chapter 4 [Reserved]
Part II – Basic Law and Procedure To Get a Restraining Order In Massachusetts ♢ 41
Chapter 5 Is a Restraining Order Criminal or Civil? ♢ 43
Chapter 6 How a Plaintiff Obtains a Restraining Order - Law & Practice. ♢ 49
Chapter 7 The laws related to Five Types of Restraining Order Hearings. ♢ 61
Chapter 8 What Is “Abuse” - the Legal and Political Standard. ♢ 71
Chapter 9 Jurisdiction & Venue - Who Can Get a Restraining Order and Where? ♢ 83
Chapter 10 Out of State Orders - Flee, Obtain, Register, Enforce. ♢ 93
Chapter 11 Divorce Restraining Orders - M.G.L. c. 208. ♢ 101
Chapter 11A Mutual Restraining Orders - A Politicized Minefield. ♢ 105
Chapter 12 The Surly Teenager - Get an Order, Get Out of the House. ♢ 109
Chapter 13 Dept of Children and Families’ Coercive Use Of Restraining Orders. ♢ 115
Chapter 14 VAWA, Immigration, and Tenancy Issues - Real and Imagined ♢ 125
Chapter 15 Now Even Your Client’s Dog Can Get a Restraining Order. ♢ 133
Part III – A Detailed Look At Restraining Orders and Their Effects ♢ 141
Chapter 16 Detailed Look at Restraining Orders - Part 1 - Staying Away. ♢ 143
Chapter 17 Detailed Look at Restraining Orders - Part 2 - Children & Money ♢ 159
Chapter 18 Detailed Look at Restraining Orders - Part 3 - Guns and Roses. ♢ 167
Part IV – Clients and Other Difficult Life Forms ♢ 175
Chapter 19 High Conflict Persons and Mental Health Issues. ♢ 177
Chapter 20 The All-important Client Interview, Wherein You (May) Discover All the Bad News. ♢ 185
Chapter 21 Get Your Fee up Front or Forget It. ♢ 195
Part V – Strategy - Plan and Organize the Battle ♢ 199
Chapter 22 First Steps to Prepare for Court. ♢ 201
Chapter 23 Core Legal Arguments Against Continuation of the Order. ♢ 211
Chapter 24 If Children are On the Order. ♢ 1229
Chapter 25 Getting the Right Strategy and Evidence to Win the Case. ♢ 235
Chapter 26 Discovery - Surely You Jest. ♢ 245
Chapter 27 Court Procedure for the Beginning Lawyer. ♢ 251
Chapter 28 The Dept. Of Children & Families and What to Do about It. ♢ 257
Part VI – Prepare for Your Court Hearing ♢ 263
Chapter 29 The Next Hearing - Be There. ♢ 265
Chapter 30 Draft Affidavits in Response. ♢ 271
Chapter 31 How to Make Witnesses Come to Hearings. ♢ 285
Chapter 32 How to Get Evidence Informally. ♢ 293
Chapter 33 Why, Oh Why, is The Plaintiff Doing This? Figuring Out A Motive. ♢ 303
Chapter 34 Case Opinions (“law”) You Need to Know. ♢ 309
Chapter 35 Critical Paperwork Preparation For the Hearing & A Good Organizational System. ♢ 327
Part VII – Prepare Witnesses for the Court Hearing ♢ 333
Chapter 36 Prepare Your Client for Court - Communication StyleAnd Court Procedure. ♢ 335
Chapter 37 Prepare Your Client for Direct & Cross Examination. ♢ 347
Chapter 38 Prepare to Cross Examine Plaintiff & Witnesses - The theory of “Gotchas”. ♢ 353
Chapter 39 Special Problems in Physical Abuse Cases. ♢ 375
Chapter 40 Special Problems in Sexual Duress Cases. ♢ 387
Chapter 41 Prepare Your Other Witnesses for Direct & Cross Examination. ♢ 391
Chapter 42 Prepare an Opening and Closing Argument. ♢ 399
Part VIII – The Hearing ♢ 407
Chapter 43 Start the Hearing Day Right: Getting to Court and Beyond. ♢ 409
Chapter 44 the Extension Hearing: Law & Procedure. ♢ 415
Chapter 45 How to Cross Examine Witnesses. ♢ 427
Chapter 46 How to Get Documentary Evidence Admitted into the Record. ♢ 443
Chapter 47 Be Ready for an Evidentiary Hearing. ♢ 461
Chapter 48 All About Probate & Family Court Restraining Order Hearings. ♢ 469
Part IX – You Lost - What Next? ♢ 477
Chapter 49 Going to Family Court to Get Parenting Time - The Essentials. ♢ 479
Chapter 50 Motion to Terminate the Restraining Order. ♢ 491
Chapter 51 Renewal Hearing at Months or Years. ♢ 503
Chapter 52 Permanent Orders - Aren’t Always. ♢ 517
Chapter 53 Appeals. ♢ 523
Chapter 54 Guns. ♢ 529
Chapter 55 Criminal Violations - Fear the Reaper. ♢ 535
Chapter 56 Expungement - If the Order is Totally Fraudulent. ♢ 543
Part X – Document Appendix ♢ 549
1 Mass. General Laws Chapter 209A. ♢ 551
2 David Letterman restraining order and affidavit from deranged applicant;
3 Complaint for Protection From Abuse; ♢ 579
4 Care and Custody Affidavit - Rule IV of the Trial Court Rules; ♢ 584
5 Abuse Protection Order Blank Form; ♢ 586
6 Plaintiff’s Motion to Modify or Terminate Restraining Order; ♢ 590
7 Defendant’s Motion to Modify or Terminate Restraining Order; ♢ 591
8 Judge Coven’s Letter - Come on Down and get your restraining order! ♢ 592
9 Application for Domestic Animal Restraining Order; ♢ 593
10 Domestic Animal Restraining Order; ♢ 595
11 Sample Defendant Affidavits; ♢ 596
12 Sample Witness Affidavits; ♢ 614
13 Notice of Appeal; ♢ 621
14 Affidavits to request child support; ♢ 622
15 Financial Statement ♢ 624
16 Child Support Guidelines Worksheet; ♢ 631
17 Power and Control Wheel; ♢ 633
18 Witness Subpoena ♢ 634
19 Subpoena Duces Tecum ♢ 635
20 Opposition to Extension of Restraining Order. ♢ 636
21 Motion to Terminate Restraining Order ♢ 639
22 Motion to Terminate Permanent Restraining Order with Affidavits ♢ 646
23 Motion to Reconsider Motion to Terminate Order ♢ 660

Family Legal Publishing

Family Legal Publishing supplies what you need and want in a legal book – real law, practice and strategy on how it is actually done.  Most legal books are heavy on theory, and give you very little on actual practice or strategy.

This is especially critical in the family law area, where there is very little actual law and courts have so much discretion. There is very little out there on how to handle a case from the moment it starts through post-hearing problems.

For each book topic we cover, we have a longer, more technical book for lawyers, and a shorter, more direct book for non-lawyers.

Our lawyer books take you from the initial meeting with the client, through working out a strategy to win the case, getting needed documents, trial preparation, and what to do if you lose. These books have all the important basics that many books leave out, but also the  advanced analysis of law, procedure and practice that will help even experienced lawyers how to be more effective.

The non-lawyer books are called, “Legal Crisis and Survival Guides”, because they help you understand the hostile legal system the way it really works, and how to survive it and deal with your case in real world terms.

Many legal books take a theoretical  and sterile approach. They are full of defensive foot-notes and are often good for little more than cites for an appellate brief. Our books are extensively foot-noted, of course, but the main focus is how to prepare a case and win it, whether by negotiation, trial, or appeal.

To survive the system, you need to know a lot of things that many legal books leave out:  sample examinations of witness, how to navigate the politics, the psychology of all the players, traps for the unwary, and a lot of other real-world how-tos.

Our books are written so that you feel the author is right there with you, looking over your shoulder to help. The tone is professional but easy to read, with a wry, enjoyable style.

Our first books address family and juvenile law topics in Massachusetts, and will expand to other states and other topics as they can be completed. You will find these books give you exceptional value, for a lot less than you often pay for less useful legal information.

Check out the table of contents and sample chapters on this site, and the Family Legal Publishing difference will be clear right away.

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Most legal books are heavy on theory, and give you very little on actual practice or strategy. We give you real law, practice and strategy on how it is actually done.


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