Protection Orders During Divorce in Singapore

protection order
Oftentimes, divorces can be a messy affair involving criminal matters as well. During the course of a divorce, accusations of domestic violence and harassment may be brought up by either spouse.

This could throw criminal proceedings into the fray as well. During which, criminal lawyers will have to be engaged in parallel with matrimonial lawyers.

There are several criminal proceedings that a spouse can initiate against the other should they feel threatened or harassed.

Personal Protection Order

If there are allegations of abuse against a spouse whether, towards the other spouse or their children, the spouse making the allegation may seek a Personal Protection Order (“PPO”). The PPO can either be consented to by the spouse facing the allegation or by a court finding that there were indeed instances of violence perpetuated against the family.

If the spouse being accused finds that these accusations are false, it would be in their best interests to hire a criminal defence lawyer to aid them in resisting a PPO application. This is especially so if a PPO is granted against them for their children.

If a PPO is granted, this could prove difficult for the spouse against who the PPO is ordered, to seek care and control and unsupervised access during the ancillary matters stage of the divorce. A PPO would prevent them from seeing their children and thus, a criminal lawyer would be best suited to advise the spouse on how to go about handling this matter.

Claims of harassment are also common when parties are going through an acrimonious divorce. This could come in the form of incessant text messages and phone calls from one spouse or even claims of stalking the spouse and their children at their new place of residence or workplace.

Protection from Harassment Act (“POHA”)

Harassment could even be towards a spouse’s relatives and friends. Over time, this can be extremely distressing for the harassed spouse, and it would be in their best interests to apply for a Protection Order (“PO”) may be made under the Protection from Harassment Act (“POHA”).

A criminal lawyer can help the harassed spouse gather and form a claim against the other spouse in order to obtain a PO. In order for a PO to be granted, it needs to be shown that the spouse was harassing the other or their children in some form and if a PO were not to be granted, these acts of harassment would continue indefinitely.

Read more: When your Abuser Violates the Personal Protection Order in Singapor

Once this is proven, the PO will be granted. A PO can be applied for on an urgent basis if the acts of harassment are unbearable, the Expedited PO may be granted within 48 to 72 hours within the filing of an application.

The PO will be in effect for as long as the court deems it fit. This will be in light of the victim’s circumstances and the duration for which it is in place for will vary depending on the victim’s situation.

Separately, if a police report has been lodged against a spouse for any of the above reasons and the police have chosen not to pursue the claim, a Magistrate’s Complaint may be lodged.

A criminal lawyer may help in this process where the complaint is first lodged. It will then be referred to a Magistrate who determines the next course of action. This could be criminal mediation between the spouses or private prosecution of the spouse against whom the report has been lodged.

The Magistrate could even order the police to launch an investigation into the acts reported of. If there is a case to be found, it will then be handed over to an Investigating Officer and a criminal trial may take place. Once a criminal lawyer is on board, they will be able to help with the case throughout the different stages.

“At Gloria James-Civetta & Co, our goal is to help you find a resolution that works for both you and your family. When you contact our expert team, we will provide you with a consultation, tailored to your specific circumstances and goals in mind.”

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