Welcome back and thank you for joining us again for this two part series on personal protection orders in Michigan. If you missed part one of this series, we recommend you take the time to look that over before reading part two.
Facts about PPOs in Michigan
There are some highly unusual things about a PPO. First, it is immediately effective when signed by the judge. Normally, a court order has to be served on all parties to a case before it becomes effective. Not so with a PPO.
Normally, all parties have advance notice of a court hearing. Some PPOs are granted with absolutely no advance notice to the Respondent / Petitioner. And normally, the person requesting a court order must request it in the county where something occurred. Not so with a PPO. The Petitioner can request a PPO in any county in Michigan.
Normally, police cannot arrest without an arrest warrant or reasonable suspicion that a crime has been committed. Not so in a Personal Protection Order case. Police can immediately arrest the Respondent if there is even a simple allegation of a violation of the PPO.
Is a PPO Better Than a CMRO?
In Michigan, during a divorce case, both parties often agree to the terms of a Civil Mutual Restraining Order. These civil orders are drafted by the divorce lawyers for one or both parties to the divorce. The order is specifically tailored to both parties’ needs. If one or both parties violate the CMRO, the court is still able to find the violating party in contempt of the court’s order and determine the punishment for the violator being in contempt of court.
However, unlike a PPO, the violating party does not automatically face immediate arrest. Punishments for contempt still serve as a deterrent for individuals to uphold the CMRO agreement while also providing leniency for possible accidental violations.
Is There an Attorney Checklist for Attempting to Enter a CMRO?
When drafting a CMRO in place of a PPO, an attorney must first check that the court has the legal basis to do so from its injunctive power. For Michigan courts, this legal basis can be found in MCR 3.310 and MCR 3.207. Before asking the judge to sign the CMRO, an attorney must also make sure that all parties involve agree to the entry of a CMRO rather than a PPO.
Why Might a Judge Refuse to Enter a CMRO in Place of a PPO?
One reason a judge may refuse to enter a CMRO in exchange for a PPO is if the judge mistakenly construes the CMRO to be a Mutual Personal Protection Order (MPPO). The difference between the two is that Michigan prohibits the entry of MPPOs but does allow CMROs. The specific Michigan statute, MCl 600.2950 states, “[a] personal protection order shall not be made mutual. Correlative separate personal protection orders are prohibited unless both parties have properly petitioned the court . . . .”
In this provision lies the prerequisite requirement that both parties have agreed to enter a CMRO before petitioning the court. In order to avoid this misunderstanding, an attorney should explain to the court the difference between a CMRO and a MPPO.
If you need to ask the court for a Civil Mutual Restraining Order or for a Personal Protection Order for any reason, come and talk to the very experienced criminal defense attorneys at The Kronzek Firm. Or call 866 766 5245 to discuss your case with an attorney today.