PA 17-163—sSB 979

Judiciary Committee

AN ACT CONCERNING NOTIFICATION TO SCHOOLS AND INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION OF RESTRAINING ORDERS, CIVIL PROTECTION ORDERS AND STANDING CRIMINAL PROTECTIVE ORDERS AFFECTING STUDENTS

SUMMARY: This act makes three changes regarding court notification to educational institutions when the court issues certain protection orders.

Under prior law, a court, at the victim's request, was required to notify the victim's school or higher education institution when it issued a civil restraining order, civil protection order, family violence protective order, or criminal protective order (see BACKGROUND). The act instead requires the notification only if the applicant provides the court with the school's or institution's name and address.

For civil restraining orders, the act additionally requires the court to provide the notice, under the conditions described above, to the school or institution in which the victim's minor child protected by the order is enrolled.

The act also expands the court's duty to notify schools or higher education institutions by requiring the court to provide notification, under the conditions described above, when it issues standing criminal protection orders and orders prohibiting harassment of a witness in a criminal case (see BACKGROUND). Prior law did not require notices in these cases.

EFFECTIVE DATE: January 1, 2018

COURT NOTIFICATION

Under prior law, if a victim protected by a civil or criminal order of protection was enrolled in a public or private elementary or secondary school or higher education institution, the court, at the victim's request, had to fax or send by another means a copy of the order or the information in it to the:

1. school or higher education institution at which the victim was enrolled;

2. president of the higher education institution; and

3. special police force, if any, at the higher education institution.

The act requires the court to send the notice only if the victim provides it with the school's or institution's name and address.

BACKGROUND

Civil Restraining Order

A family or household member may apply for a civil restraining order for relief from physical abuse, stalking, or a pattern of threatening from another family or household member (CGS 46b-15).

Civil Protection Order

A victim of sexual abuse, sexual assault, or stalking may apply for a civil protection order if he or she is not eligible for the restraining order described above (CGS 46b-16a).

Family Violence Protective Order

At the recommendation of the family relations office or the State Attorney's Office, a court may issue a family violence protection order in family violence cases to protect a victim from threats, harassment, injury, or intimidation. This order is issued at the time of arraignment during a criminal proceeding (CGS 46b-38c).

Criminal Protective Orders

Courts may independently issue, on behalf of a victim, a (1) protective order after a person is arrested for certain crimes or (2) standing criminal protective order after a person is convicted of certain crimes (CGS 54-1k and 53a-40e).

Orders Prohibiting Harassment of a Witness in a Criminal Case

Upon application of a prosecutorial official, a court may issue an order prohibiting the harassment of a witness in a criminal case. The court may issue a temporary restraining order if it finds reasonable grounds to believe that (1) an identified witness is being harassed or (2) an order is necessary to prevent witness tampering or intimidation. It may issue a protective order if, after a hearing, it finds that the order is necessary to prevent witness tampering or intimidation (CGS 54-82q and 54-82r).