Serve your long-term elder or dependent adult abuse restraining order

After a judge grants you a long-term restraining order, there may be additional steps you need to take, like serving (giving) a copy of the restraining order to the other side. 

If you were ordered to serve and you don't, the police may not be able to enforce your order.


How to serve a long-term restraining order

  • Serve by mail or in person

    Look at item 16 on form EA-130 to see if the judge ordered you to serve by mail or in person. If you are ordered to serve by mail, this means your server only has to mail a copy of the restraining order to the restrained person. But, serving someone in person is always best. When you mail court papers, it may be hard to prove that the person actually received a copy especially if the person moves a lot.

  • Choose a server

    You can't serve your court papers yourself.

    • Have the sheriff serve 
      If you have an address for the restrained person, the sheriff can serve. If you've asked the sheriff to serve court papers before, you will follow the same steps as you did before unless the restrained person has moved to another county.
      Contact the Sheriff’s department in the county where the person you want protection from is located to find out where to go to give them your court papers. In Shasta or Trinity county, contact the marshal for service. 
    • If you don't want to use the sheriff

      Choose someone that is:

      • 18 years old or over, and 
      • Not involved in this court case. 

      Your server can be someone you know or a professional process server you hire.

      Think about your server's safety. If you have any concerns, consider using the sheriff. 
  • Give your server a copy of your restraining order

    Your server will need a copy of your restraining order (form EA-130 and any other form that is included in your restraining order). The sheriff may have paperwork you need to complete. If you need help completing forms, you may want to bring someone with you to the sheriff's office.

  • Have your server complete a form

    A form, called "proof of service", must be filed with the court to prove that the restrained person was served.

    • Sheriff
      If you asked the sheriff to serve your restraining order, they will complete a proof of service form for you. Ask the sheriff if they will file the form with the court. If they will not, you will need to take it to the court to file.
    • Not the sheriff
      If your server is someone you know or a process server, give your server one of these forms:
      • Form EA-200 if your restraining order is going to be served in person, or
      • Form EA-260 if your restraining order is going to be served by mail.
  • File the proof of service form

    Make a copy of the completed proof of service form. Take the original and the copy to the courthouse to file with the court clerk. The clerk will keep the original and return the copy to you. Keep a copy of the proof of service form with your restraining order (form EA-130). 

    Then you won't need to file a proof of service form. Make sure the sheriff gives you a copy or you can get one from the court clerk. Keep a copy of the proof of service form with your restraining order.

Get help if your restraining order is violated

Call 9-1-1 if you want the police to enforce your restraining order.

Your restraining order is enforceable (will be honored) in all 50 states and U.S. territories, the District of Columbia (D.C.), and all tribal lands.

See the Resources page for help preventing elder or dependent adult abuse.

Enforce your restraining order

What's next?

Now that you have a restraining order, you may need to enforce it if the restrained person violates the order. Also, there are other steps you may want to take to help enforce the order.

success alert banner:

Have a question about Elder abuse restraining order?

Look for a "Chat Now" button in the right bottom corner of your screen. If you don’t see it, disable any pop-up/ad blockers on your browser.