The Harassment Prevention Order (M.G.L. c. 258E) is a law that went into effect May 10, 2010 and allows victims of stalking, sexual assault and/or harassment to obtain a harassment prevention order against his/her perpetrator. There is no requirement of a relationship between the victim and perpetrator and violation of the order can be prosecuted criminally.
“Harassment” is defined as:
- Three or more acts of willful and malicious conduct aimed at a specific person committed with the intent to cause fear, intimidation, abuse or damage to property and that does in fact cause fear, intimidation, abuse or damage to property; or
- One act that by force, threat or duress causes another to involuntarily engage in sexual relations; or
- One act that constitutes a violation of certain specifically enumerated criminal statutes.
If granted, the court may order the perpetrator of the harassment to:
- refrain from abusing or harassing the victim;
- refrain from contacting the victim;
- stay away from the victim’s home or workplace; and/or
- pay monetary compensation for the losses suffered as a result of the harassment.
You may request a Harassment Prevention Order in the District Court, Superior Court, or Juvenile Court (if the defendant is under 17 years) that has venue over your residence.
If you need assistance at a harassment prevention hearing, contact the Law Offices of Renee Lazar at 978-844-4095 to schedule a FREE one hour no obligation consultation.