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Name: G.G. v. G.S.
Case #: B331944
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 4
Opinion Date: 05/28/2024

The trial court improperly denied the renewal of a Domestic Violence Restraining Order (DVRO) where it focused on the lack of violations of the existing DVRO rather than petitioner’s reasonable apprehension that offending behaviors would resume after the order’s expiration. Following the end of their relationship, G.G. was granted a DVRO protecting herself from G.S. due, primarily, to his stalking behaviors. Two years later, G.G. sought a renewal of that order. G.G. presented some evidence of ongoing stalking, which the court found could mostly be attributed to inadvertence or misunderstanding. The court denied the renewal of the order finding that G.G.’s fear of G.S. was not reasonable. G.G. appealed and the reviewing court reversed. A renewal of a DVRO does not require a showing of further abuse. A three-factor test exists as a guide to whether a DVRO should be renewed. The court should consider: 1) the factual predicate for the original DVRO, 2) any significant change in circumstances since the original DVRO issued, and 3) how much the DVRO burdens the restrained party. Courts should not make a distinction between physical and non-physical abuse when deciding whether to renew a DVRO. Here, the court found that factors two and three supported G.G.’s request but still denied the renewal because of the absence of intentional violations of the DVRO. The court should have determined whether a reasonable person would have apprehension that the abusive behavior would resume after the order’s expiration. The matter must be remanded for the trial court to reconsider the request.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: