When someone you know begins making you feel unsafe or in danger, you may look to the state of Maryland for help. Issued by a judge, protective and peace orders set boundaries that prevent a particular person from committing certain acts against you.
According to the Maryland Courts, a peace or protective order may set boundaries that prevent a specific party from contacting you at home, work or school. It may also set other boundaries with regard to threats, harassment and so on. What determines whether you need a peace order or a protective order is your relationship with the party you file it against.
You may need to secure a protective order if the person threatening, harassing or otherwise endangering you is someone with whom you are either in a romantic relationship or someone with whom you share a romantic past. A protective order may also be appropriate if the party you wish to limit contact with is someone in your family, even if the relationship is not romantic in nature.
A peace order differs from a protective order in that it applies to individuals who are not romantic or familial contacts. For example, you may need a peace order if the person you plan to file it against is a neighbor, a coworker or someone else with whom you do not share a close personal relationship.
To apply for a protective or peace order, you must file a petition and then attend a scheduled temporary hearing. Once the other party is served, you will also have to attend a final hearing to determine if the order stays in place moving forward.