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This Article presents a comprehensive survey of civil protection order statutes and state appellate opinions in all fifty jurisdictions, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. We examine recent developments and trends, and highlight innovations. We include recommendations for further legislative reform and for creative development of case law. We have incorporated available social science research, the published policies and recommendations of judicial authorities, and the legal literature written by domestic violence experts. Moreover, our recommendations are based on our experience as domestic violence advocates. Each of us has represented battered women in court for more than a decade.

In addition to civil protection orders, we discuss and analyze statutes and judicial opinions from related areas of the law, including custody and criminal laws specifically addressing domestic violence issues. Advocates seeking to explore the full potential of the civil protection order statutes in their states should use this research in preparing briefs and arguments to persuade judges to issue bold and effective protection orders in domestic violence cases.



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