July 14, 2011

New Case Law – Family Abuse Prevention Act Restraining Orders

On July 13, 2011, the Oregon Court of Appeals decided Maffey v. Muchka.

The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s continuance of a restraining order based on the petitioner’s testimony that the respondent threatened her and physically intimidated her and that she feared future abuse.  The respondent argued that petitioner had not established that he had abused her in the 180 days prior to petitioner filing for a restraining order.  The Court of Appeals, however, clarified that abuse, as defined by the Family Abuse Prevention Act, includes not only physically injuring a domestic partner, but also attempting to injure and causing the other person to fear imminent injury.  The Court of Appeals also found that the petitioner offered sufficient evidence of her fear of future abuse by testifying that respondent had engaged in a pattern of controlling and threatening behavior toward her which continued to escalate.

The entire opinion can be found here.