The court in In re Marriage of Everard issued mutual restraining orders after it found that both parties were primary aggressors.
The parties were married for ten years. They had two minor children together. Each spouse filed a restraining order against the other spouse.
The family law judge found that each party was a primary aggressor at different times and that neither party acted in self defense. The family court issued a mutual restraining order restraining both parties from contacting the other party. The husband appealed the restraining order issued against him stating the court did not make the proper detailed findings.
The Fourth Appellate Court agreed with the family law judge. Family Code section 6305 allows a family law judge to issue a restraining order against both parties when the court makes detailed findings that each party was the primary aggressor and neither party acted in self defense. The Appellate Court found that there was sufficient evidence in the record to support a mutual restraining order. In addition, the record showed that the judge carefully reviewed the evidence.
FC 6305(a): The court shall not issue a mutual order enjoining the parties from specific acts of abuse described in Section 6320 unless both of the following apply:
1. Both parties personally appear and each party presents written evidence of abuse or domestic violence in an application for relief using a mandatory Judicial Council restraining order application form. For purposes of this paragraph, written evidence of abuse or domestic violence in a responsive pleading does not satisfy the party’s obligation to present written evidence of abuse or domestic violence. By July 1, 2016, the Judicial Council shall modify forms as necessary to provide notice of this information.
2. The court makes detailed findings of fact indicating that both parties acted as a primary aggressor and that neither party acted primarily in self-defense.
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