If you are a minor (under age 18) in Vermont, you can apply for three types of court orders to protect you from abuse, stalking and sexual assault.
- a Relief from Abuse Order
- an Order Against Stalking, or
- an Order Against Sexual Assault
A Relief from Abuse Order is a protection order that is available to protect you from abuse or stalking by someone you have dated or had a sexual relationship with, or by a family member of someone you have lived with.
An Order Against Stalking or an Order Against Sexual Assault is available if you need protection against anyone else who has stalked or sexually assaulted you. This could be a friend, acquaintance or stranger. If you qualify for a Relief From Abuse Order, you need to apply for that rather than an Order Against Stalking or an Order Against Sexual Assault.
Are there age requirements?
- You can apply for a Relief from Abuse order against a dating partner at any age.
- You must be 16 or older to apply for a Relief from Abuse order against someone you live with or lived with, or someone who you have or had a sexual relationship with.
- You must be 16 or older to apply for an Order Against Stalking or an Order Against Sexual Assault.
Who else can ask for an order?
Parents, guardians or “next friends” may apply for protection orders on behalf of minors (under 18). Next friends are other adults you trust.
What forms do I use?
Relief from Abuse forms
If you are asking for a Relief from Abuse Order, see what forms you need on our RFA Roadmap.
Sexual Assault forms
- If you are a teen who needs help because of dating violence or sexual violence, read this booklet. It’s about protection orders for people who are under 18 years old.
- This handout from Vermont Network gives you quick information about protection orders for minors.
- The Vermont legislature established a process to ask the court for an order to protect a child who is not a U.S. citizen. Learn more about Vulnerable Noncitizen Children on the Vermont Judiciary website.
Get help from an advocate
- Dating / Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-228-7395
- Sexual Violence Hotline: 1-800-489-7273
- Vermont Network website