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  • Do Temporary Restraining Orders Go on Your Record?

    Posted on by JACK MKHITARIAN

    Do Temporary Restraining Orders Go on Your RecordIn New Mexico, temporary restraining orders (TROs) typically do not go on an individual’s criminal record. However, if a person violates a TRO, they may face felony criminal charges, which will most likely go on their criminal record. These court-issued orders are taken seriously, and anyone subject to a TRO who violates its terms can face criminal charges.

    What Is a Temporary Restraining Order? 

    A TRO is a legal order that prohibits the person named in the order (respondent) from contacting the person who requested the order (petitioner) for a specified period, usually until a hearing can be held to determine whether a permanent restraining order is necessary. TROs are civil remedies, not criminal charges or convictions. However, temporary restraining orders are legally enforceable court orders, and violating a TRO can bring about criminal charges. 

    When Do Temporary Restraining Orders Go on Your Record?

    Because a temporary restraining order is a civil cause of action, they do not end up on your criminal record. However, if you violate the terms of a restraining order, that is a crime and, if you are convicted, it will go on your record. 

    Types of Restraining Orders in New Mexico

    New Mexico has various types of TROs or protective orders. These orders are designed to protect individuals from harm or harassment. Generally, TROs are temporary and provide immediate protection while legal proceedings are ongoing. 

    Domestic Violence Temporary Restraining Order (DV-TRO)

    In New Mexico, a petitioner may seek a DV-TRO in cases of harassment, domestic violence, or other types of harm. Alleged offenders do not typically receive advance notice of a DV-TRO. DV-TROs generally last about 14 days or until the court holds a hearing for a permanent order. These orders provide immediate and temporary relief, often including no-contact orders, orders to vacate a shared residence, and temporary custody arrangements. 

    Sexual Assault Temporary Restraining Order (SA-TRO)

    Unlike domestic violence protective orders, SA-TROs are issued to protect victims of sexual assault, stalking, or sexual exploitation from another person, regardless of whether the accused is a household member. Notably, an actual assault need not exist; it is sufficient to establish an attempt or threat of an assault. 

    Harassment Temporary Restraining Order

    Temporary harassment restraining orders are available to those experiencing harassment, intimidation, or threats. 

    Child Custody and Visitation Temporary Restraining Order

    Child custody and visitation restraining orders address the complex and emotionally charged issues often accompanying divorce or separation proceedings. 

    Orders of Protection for Vulnerable Adults

    Vulnerable adults, their families or other concerned parties may seek an order of protection for the vulnerable adult at risk of abuse, neglect, or exploitation. 

    Extreme Risk Firearm Temporary Restraining Order (ERF-TRO)

    ERF-TROs allow for the temporary removal of firearms from individuals who pose a significant risk to themselves or others because of mental health issues or threats of violence.

    The requirements, procedures, and duration of the various TROs depend on the facts and circumstances of the abuse and protection requested. 

    What Is the Difference Between Temporary and Permanent Restraining Orders

    There are crucial differences between TROs and permanent restraining orders (PROs). Broadly, the differences involve the purpose, duration, legal processes, and implications of the protective orders. 

    Do TROs Go on Your Record?

    Generally, TROs begin as civil matters; therefore, these orders do not automatically impact the accused’s criminal record. However, violating a TRO can lead to criminal implications. If the respondent violates the TRO by contacting or approaching the petitioner, they may be arrested and charged with criminal contempt of court. Depending on the severity of the violation, this charge can result in fines, probation, or even jail time. While TROs are not generally included in the accused’s criminal record, they are often part of the public record. 

    Consequences of TRO in New Mexico

    Those subject to a TRO can face many consequences that impact many areas of the accused’s life.  


    In many cases, the accused must stay away from the petitioner and refrain from any contact. 

    Firearms Surrender

    In some cases, the accused may need to surrender their firearms while the TRO is in effect. 

    Custody and Visitation Implications

    The order may impact visitation rights in cases involving parties who share custody of children.


    A TRO can impact the accused’s employment or housing situation. For example, if the parties share a home, the TRO can result in the accused being forced to find another living arrangement. 

    Criminal Charges

    If the accused violates the TRO, they may face criminal charges for contempt of court.

    Collateral Consequences

    TROs carry many social, economic, and reputational consequences for the accused. Even in false or exaggerated claims, friends, family, and coworkers may become aware of the order, leading to strained relationships. 

    If you are the subject of a TRO in New Mexico, you should consult with an experienced attorney to discuss mitigating the consequences of these serious orders. Although TROs begin as civil matters, they can quickly result in criminal charges. 

    Are You Interested in Learning More About When Does a TRO Go on Your Record?

    The question is, Does a restraining order go on your record in New Mexico? The answer to this question is pretty straightforward in most situations because absent criminal violations of the order, they probably will not end up on your record. However, if you are charged with violating a restraining order and you’re convicted, that will likely show up on your record. At the New Mexico Criminal Defense Law Offices, we have decades of combined experience defending clients who have been charged with violating domestic violence restraining orders and other protective orders. We understand the most effective ways to call the alleged victim’s credibility into question, casting doubt on the entire proceeding. Since restraining order violations are crimes, the prosecution must prove you violated the order beyond a reasonable doubt. Contact us today to learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a New Mexico restraining order violation attorney.