North Carolina Restraining Order Overview

There are two types of restraining orders, also called no contact orders, in North Carolina.  The first is a Domestic Violence Protective Order, commonly called a “50-B” in reference to the statute that authorizes that relief.  The second is a Civil No-Contact Order, commonly called a “50-C” in reference to the statute that defines its requirements.

Difference Between 50-C’s And 50-B’s

50-C’s and 50-B’s differ in the relationship between the parties, what the Order can provide the person seeking it, and the consequences to the defendant for violating an order once entered.

A 50-B is available to victims of domestic violence who allege that a defendant caused or attempted to cause bodily injury, placed the victim or a member of the victim’s household in fear of bodily injury, continued harassment, or the commission of a sexual offense. A personal relationship is required for a 50-B.

A 50-C is available to the victims of unlawful conduct, including stalking, harassment, or nonconsensual sexual contact in instances where the parties do not have the personal relationship required for a 50-B.

Definition Of A Personal Relationship

A 50-B can only be entered between parties who have a personal relationship.  A personal relationship includes current or former spouses, current or former dating partners, current or former household members, two people who have a child in common, parent and child, or grandparent and grandchild.

A 50-C does not require any specific relationship between the parties, only that the perpetrator of the unlawful conduct be over the age of 16.

Process Of Getting A 50C Or 50B

  1. When seeking either a 50-B or 50-C order, the plaintiff initially requests an ex parte Order from the Court. Ex parte orders are initial orders to prevent a defendant from contacting a plaintiff.
  2. At the ex parte stage, the Court will either allow the plaintiff’s motion and enter the order requested, or decline to enter an order.
  3. Regardless of whether the Court initially allows or declines the plaintiff’s motion, a hearing will be scheduled within 10 days.
  4. At a hearing, both parties are allowed an opportunity to be heard and present further evidence on the events alleged by the plaintiff.
  5. The Court makes a final determination in the case. It can either enter an order lasting up to one (1) year or dismiss the case.

What is Required of a Defendant?

Both a 50-B and a 50-C, if entered at any stage, require that a defendant not contact the plaintiff, directly or via third parties, any further.  The 50-B specifically requires that a defendant commit no further acts of domestic violence against a plaintiff and it can include other members of the plaintiff’s household and pets. There also are many other restrictions on a defendant’s rights that can come from the entry of a 50-B.

If you need help obtaining, renewing, or fighting a 50-C or 50-B, please contact Greenwood Law by calling 336-661-8788 or contact us online and schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys.