If you’re threatened by your spouse or feel that you’re potentially going to become a victim of domestic violence, it’s realistic to seek out a protective order. These orders help people in dangerous situations get away from their abusers.

They’re a critical part of the justice system, and they help keep you and your children safe when threatened. However, there are some people who take advantage of these orders, which can end up hurting their cases in court.

If you’re planning to seek out an order of protection, make sure you are only doing so out of true need. These orders are easy to obtain, but that doesn’t mean everyone who seeks one actually needs one. Falsely accusing your spouse of abuse or threatening you with abuse hurts his or her reputation, and it could come back to haunt you if it’s found you lied or made false allegations.

False allegations do result in penalties

If you make false allegations and obtain a protective order, first know that you’re taking resources away from those who need them. If the order is unnecessary, you could also face allegations from your spouse claiming that you’re the abusive or aggressive party in the divorce. With your own reputation hurt by findings that the allegations you made were false, you’ll be less trustworthy in the eyes of a court.

Men are more likely to be affected by restraining orders and orders of protection

Male clients are most likely to be affected by protective orders. Their spouses, mainly women, may claim that they are victims. Sometimes they really are, and other times, they’re using their gender as a basis for making allegations against a stronger spouse (and one who is already facing a bias). All a person has to do to get an order of protection is to state that he or she feels threatened by a partner. The reality is that there is no requirement for proof or a past history of domestic violence.

In some cases, there is literally nothing that took place that should have led to an order of protection being issued. Yet, the person accused still has to deal with being restricted in some way and having his or her reputation ruined. Even if the discovery that the person who sought the order was lying gets out, much of the damage that was done already took its toll.

Anyone accused of domestic violence needs to know that there are steps to protect your reputation from further damage. While victims do deserve these protections, false allegations need to stop.