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Legal Information: Maryland

Restraining Orders

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Laws current as of
November 27, 2023

I was not granted a protective order. How can I stay safe?

If you are not granted protective order, there are still some things you can do to stay safe. It might be a good idea to contact one of the domestic violence resource centers in your area to get help, support, and advice. They can help you develop a safety plan and help connect you with the resources you need. For safety planning help, ideas, and information, go to our Safety Planning page. To find a shelter or an advocate at a local program, please visit our MD Advocates and Shelters page.

Even without a protective order, if you have been the victim of abuse and you believe that you are in danger of immediate harm, you can request the help of local law enforcement to accompany you to the “family home” to remove the following items regardless of who paid for the items:

  • the personal clothing of you and of any child in your care; and
  • the personal belongings, including medicine or medical devices, of you and of any child in your care.1

If you were not granted protective order because your relationship with the abuser does not qualify, you may be able to seek protection through a peace order. You may also be able to reapply for a protective order if a new incident of domestic abuse occurs after you are denied the order.

If you believe the judge made an error of law, you can talk to someone at a domestic violence organization or a lawyer about the possibility of an appeal. Generally, appeals are complicated and you will most likely need the help of a lawyer. See our Filing an Appeal page for general info on appeals.

1 MD Code Ann., Fam. Law § 4-502(a)(2)