NJ Courts announce huge change in domestic-violence outreach
State law overview
For an overview of state law such as residency requirements, grounds for divorce (“no-fault” versus “fault-based” divorces) and venues for litigation, please see our three-part series:
Don’t overlook the emotional toll
If you take the opportunity to read those three installments, you’ll notice that we take an early opportunity to discuss the psychological and emotional well-being of anyone going through the painful process of divorce. Yes, our chief function here is to 1) help you quickly find the information you need in your locale, and 2) to help you as efficiently and painlessly as possible to connect with a trained, experienced attorney that you feel comfortable with.
Be safe–handle domestic violence, first
That being said, we also want you to be safe. That’s why Part 1 includes statewide links to help for anyone whose relationship includes domestic violence. Accordingly, we repeat here some similar information, namely some of the agencies and facilities that residents of Jersey City and the local vicinage have for help with domestic violence. First, we lead off with some important news, which affects not only your vicinage but also the rest of the state, from a Nov. 3 press release from the New Jersey Courts (please see entire PR for all information):
New Jersey leads outreach efforts
The New Jersey Judiciary has joined with hospitals and safe houses to help victims of domestic violence apply for temporary restraining orders without going to a courthouse.
Through the Hospital to Court Safety Assistance Project and the Safe House to Court Safety Assistance Project, domestic violence victims can appear before a judge via videoconferencing if they are being treated in an emergency room or have sought refuge in a safe house.
“It’s often difficult for domestic violence victims to seek a temporary restraining order if they are injured and need medical attention or if they are afraid to leave a safe house,” said Judge Glenn A. Grant, acting administrative director of the courts. “Allowing victims to apply for a TRO via videoconferencing gives them protection from their abuser, affords them some peace of mind and helps expedite the legal process for obtaining a final restraining order.”
The program was piloted in the Passaic Vicinage in partnership with St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson and has expanded to include hospitals in Camden, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson and Union counties and safe houses in Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Essex, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris and Passaic counties.
The programs are funded with $172,174 through the federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which is administered by the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice within the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety.
Local resources for help with domestic violence
The preceding is really good news for victims of domestic violence in New Jersey and may signify an important, legal sea-change in reaching out to victims; following are Jersey City and Hudson County-area online resources:
- Jersey City Police Department
- Hudson County Shelter list
- Women Rising
Next, Getting a divorce in Jersey City, Part 2: more about your specific courts and local rules.
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