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Can I ask for a 209A Restraining Order even if no judge is on duty ?

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute
Reviewed October 2023

If you go to a court and no judge is on duty, the court clerk will help you get a hearing with a judge at another court. You fill out the papers and the clerk faxes them to the judge at the other court. The judge holds the hearing by phone or by video conference, like Zoom.

The hearing should be recorded.

If the judge grants the order:

  1. The order should last up to 10 court business days and
  2. The next hearing should be scheduled for a date when a judge will be present at the court where you filed.

The clerk should not send you to a different court.

The clerk should not tell you to wait until the Judicial Response System goes into operation at 4:30 p.m.

See Section 1:10 of the 2021 Guidelines, page 51.

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