New Jersey Extends Restraining Order Protections

Lawmakers in NJ have expanded the opportunities for protection orders by enacting the New Jersey’s Victim’s Assistance and Survivor Protection Act, which allows victims to file temporary restraining orders against strangers for stalking or cyberharassment.

Get a Restraining Order for Stalking in NJ Just as the way we meet new people and form personal relationships has changed dramatically with the use of technology and social media, so too has the ways in which victims of domestic abuse and stalking are harassed and harmed by their abusers. A rise in internet stalking and harassment in particular rendered many victims without proper legal protections because their circumstances did not fall within existing categories of domestic violence victims. Previous to the recent expansion of New Jersey’s law on restraining orders, the law offered restraining orders to people who met certain relationship criteria with their abusers, and the New Jersey’s Sexual Assault Survivors Protection Act (SASPA) only offered protection to victims through sexual assault restraining orders if they were victims of sexual offenses. Those who could obtain restraining orders based on stalking or harassment must have either been minors or adults with mental disabilities, unless they had an existing connection with the offender. However, the law failed to adequately address the needs of victims who did not personally know their stalkers, thereby leaving a “stranger loophole.”

In July 2023, New Jersey Governor Murphy signed an expansion of this Act into law, with a new name,  the Victim’s Assistance and Survivor Protection Act, to represent the expanded protection for victims who failed to meet the strict criteria of the old law. The expanded law closes the “stranger loophole” and bolsters the protections afforded to victims in several notable ways.

The Evolution of NJ Restraining Order Law to Encompass More Victims

Prior to the passage of New Jersey’s Victim’s Assistance and Survivor Protection Act, only victims who were physically or mentally disabled were able to seek a restraining order against a stalker. Other victims were required to have some type of romantic or familial relationship to the perpetrator, which marginalized and left victims without any prior relationship to their stalkers without the power of a restraining order under New Jersey law. Now, victims who are targeted by strangers on the internet or even acquaintances whom they have no history of a relationship with can be protected through temporary and/or final restraining orders.

Notably, the new law specifically addresses cyberstalking as a ground in the Act for which a victim can seek a protective order. In the digital age, the rise of cyberstalking has been facilitated through the many different ways a victim can be contacted, stalked, and harassed including through private Facebook messages, posts on an individual’s Facebook page, Instagram direct messages, Snapchat messages, email, phone texts, and more. Abusers may even try to hack into an individual’s private account, send messages to others from the victim’s accounts, and impersonate, blackmail, and threaten victims. Even though the abuse is virtual, there is an unfortunate paradox of cyberstalking in which the abuse can simultaneously feel very isolating and personally threatening, but also publicly humiliating and almost omnipresent.

New Jersey’s Victim’s Assistance and Survivor Protection Act recognizes the real and lasting harm that these forms of abuse can have on victims and provides them with an avenue to protect and advocate for themselves.

Impact of the Newly Expanded Restraining Order Law on Defendants in NJ

While the new law expands protections available to victims of cyberstalking, it in-turn creates a whole new class of defendants against whom restraining orders can be sought. This shift, therefore, requires an equal focus on due process and a defendant’s right to defend themselves against allegations of stalking and abuse, which a Defendant’s Constitutional rights protect.

When an alleged victim seeks a restraining order against an alleged abuser, the defendant has the right to due process, which include a fair and impartial review of both the victim’s petition and accusations, as well as the defendant’s side of the story. Defendants in these cases have the right to be represented by legal counsel and present evidence and witness testimony in support of their defense.

If you are a defendant facing a restraining order based on the expanded grounds of this new law, the experienced domestic violence defense attorneys at The Tormey Law Firm can help to ensure that your Constitutional rights are protected during the proceedings and present all relevant evidence in your defense, which might include evidence that undermines the credibility of the victim and/or other witnesses.

The Role of an Attorney in Restraining Order Cases Lacking Familial or Dating Relationships

In cases involving alleged domestic violence, abuse, and/or stalking, it is critical that both victims and defendants receive the counsel and advocacy they need. These types of crimes are very serious, and victims should not leave their safety to chance or endure the potentially life-threatening nature of domestic abuse or the mental and emotional toll that it can take on them.

Defendant’s or individuals against whom allegations of abuse or stalking have been made also need an advocate who can protect their rights and present a compelling defense of any allegations made against them.

Contact our Team of New Jersey Attorneys for Help with a Restraining Order Involving Someone You do Not Know

Regardless of whether you are the victim or the accused, legal representation in these cases is indispensable. Our team of experienced New Jersey domestic violence and restraining order attorneys has handled countless restraining order cases and we are committed to protecting the interests of our clients and ensuring that they receive dedicated advocacy. For more information about how we can help you in your restraining order case, please contact us at (201)-556-1570 for a free consultation with our team.

Additional Information:


  • No promises, just a Pro!

  • Excellent Lawyer... Helped me in every step off my Case..

  • Great work

  • Best lawyer!!

  • FRO removal success!!

  • Easy to work with, straightforward

  • Kept my license

  • Father of client

  • Excellent Attorney , Charges Dismissed as promised

  • Helped every step of the way

  • Avoid mandatory jail time on shoplifting charges


  • Help

  • Did the job he was hired to do

  • Great lawyer

  • Simple assault charge was dropped

  • Top Notch Representation

  • Well worth it.

  • DUI Case Dismissed

  • 2 felony charges dismissed

  • Cameron bury

  • great attorney

  • Hands Down Professional and delivers results!!!

  • DUI case dismissed

  • 125 stars out of 10!!

  • Excellent at getting best outcome

  • Excellent Attorney

  • TRO Dismissal

  • Efficient Excellent attorney.

  • Excellent attorney

  • Travis successfully defended me in an unprecedented Final Restraining Order Trial with ease

  • Kick Ass Attorney!

  • Efficient and professional attorney

  • Great Lawyer And Great Results

  • Top Notch DUI Attorney

  • Client Domestic Violence

  • Restraining Order

  • A real pro in a time of need - DWI Dismissed.

  • The most experienced, patient and affordable attorney

  • Travis Tormey successfully had a False TRO against me dismissed.

  • Underaged Drinking

  • Underaged Drinking

  • DUI Dismissed

  • Saved me from a DUI. HIGHLY recommended

  • Restraining Order

  • Case dismissed with Data Driven Facts

  • Respectful. Attentive. Professional.

  • Trespassing and Under the Influence Disorderly Persons charges

  • If you are reading this- You have reached the right place! Undoubtedly, the BEST Law Firm in New Jersey!

  • Amazing attorney with a heart of gold

  • Exceeded my expectations, Highly Professional Attorney

  • Responsive and knowledgeable.

  • The Tormey law firm was very kind and professional

  • Expungement

  • Travis Tormey is a True Professional Who Kept Me Out of Jail

  • Saved me a whole ton of problems

  • Travis Tormey Review

  • A nightmare case, with a happy ending.

  • Elite NJ Marijuana Attorney! 5 Stars!!

  • An Excellent lawyer!

  • Great lawyer for DUI

  • I highly endorse Travis Tormey.

  • Travis Tormey Law Firm

  • Travis is a Lifesaver

  • Travis J. Tormey - Evaluation

  • Great Lawyer. Got me off exactly what I wanted

  • Consummate Professional!

  • Great Criminal Defense Lawyer

  • Good Service

  • Exceptional Lawyer

  • Exceptional Lawyer

  • Hired to defend me for aggravated assault

  • Hired to defend me in a restraning order

  • Excellent attorney, highly recommend his talents

  • DWI Counsel

  • I highly recommend Mr. Tormey

  • Great attorney

  • Travis Tormey, Esq. - Great Results!

  • Travis Tormey - Excellent Attorney-Kind and Trustworthy

  • Excellent Attorney-Trustworthy and Kind

  • An Outstanding lawyer!!! That will represent you in the correct way!

  • Excellent Attorney! You will not be dissapointed....

  • Travis Tormey Gets Results!

  • tormey

  • Success!!

  • Travis Tormey Review

  • Only Lawyer I Recommend

  • Very Grateful

  • Attorney review of Travis Tormey

  • Excellent

Experience You Can Trust

With unmatched knowledge and experience in the practice of law, the seasoned attorneys at The Tormey Law Firm are committed to serving their clients and tenaciously confronting the allegations against them.

We will examine every facet of your case in order to defend your constitutional rights and reputation. With a dedicated legal advocate to assist you, our attorneys will ensure that you are never forced to navigate the complex legal process on your own.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Learn More About How to Fight Your Charges

If you've been charged with a criminal offense, disorderly persons offense, or traffic / DWI violation, you have the right to an attorney who will defend you against your charges and fight for your best interests. To learn more about how your attorney can fight to have your charges dismissed or reduced, click a link below to see our video library of legal defenses and strategies.

The Tormey Law Firm

Areas we serve

Bergen County, Essex County, Morris County, Passaic County, Hudson County, Middlesex County, Somerset County including Morristown, Denville, Dover, Mount Olive, Parsippany, Hackensack, East Rutherford, Elmwood Park, Englewood, Fort Lee, Garfield, Lodi, Lyndhurst, Mahwah, Palisades Park, Paramus, Ridgefield Park, Saddle Brook, Teaneck, Clifton, and Wayne.

  • Hackensack Office

    254 State Street Hackensack, NJ 07601

    (201) 556-1570

    view larger map

  • Morristown Office

    55 Madison Avenue Suite 400, Morristown, NJ 07960

    (908) 336-5008

    view larger map