• If the police witness or have probable cause to believe that you have violated an abuse prevention order, the police are required to arrest you. 
  • An abuse prevention order is a civil order but a violation of certain parts the order is a criminal offense.  Violation of the no abuse, no contact, leave the home, stay away from home/work or surrender firearms terms of an order are criminal offenses.  A violation is punishable by up to two and a half years in the house of correction.  If you are found guilty of this crime, you can go to jail and/or be placed on probation.  A criminal conviction (even a continuance without a finding) can (among other things) affect your ability to obtain employment, public housing, or citizenship, or subject you to deportation.
  • Failure to pay money owed.  If you do not pay child support, child support or any money damages ordered, the court can hold a hearing to see if you should be held in contempt of court for not following this part of the order.

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