Authorizes the family court in family offense proceedings to extend an order of protection upon the showing of good cause or consent of the parties.
BILL NUMBER: S2972A
TITLE OF BILL :
An act to amend the family court act, in relation to the extension of orders of protection in family offense proceedings
PURPOSE OF BILL :
This bill seeks to strengthen current provisions of the law to protect victims of domestic violence. It permits victims with existing orders of protection who are seeking to prevent a recurrence of domestic abuse to extend their order upon a showing of good cause.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS OF BILL :
Section 1 amends section 842 of the Family Court Act to authorize a court to extend an order of protection for a reasonable period of time upon a showing of good cause or consent of the parties and requires the court to articulate the basis for its decision on the record. It further provides that the fact that abuse has not occurred during the pendency of an order shall not, in itself, constitute sufficient ground for denying or failing to extend the order. This section replaces the existing language for extension of orders of protection in section 842 of the Family Court Act.
Section 2 deletes the current language for extension of orders of protection.
Section 3 provides that this act shall take effect immediately and shall apply to all orders entered prior to such *effective date, and to all actions and proceedings pending on or commenced on or after such effective date.
EXISTING LAW : The existing law grants the court the authority to extend an order of protection for a reasonable period of Hume upon a showing of "special circumstances".
JUSTIFICATION : Our legislature has recognized that domestic violence is a crime of enormous magnitude with effects on all New Yorkers, regardless of age, race, or economic status and with long term and pervasive consequences for victims, families, communities and society. Each year an estimated 400,000 domestic violence incidents are reported to law enforcement in New York, approximately 300,000 calls are received by hotlines throughout the State, and in 2008 alone, over 220,000 orders of protection were issued in domestic violence cases. According to the Office of Prevention Of Domestic Violence, New York has shown an increase in indicators of domestic violence. Between 2007 and 2008 there was an increase in the number of intimate partner homicides and calls to domestic violence hotlines. The circumstances for victims seem to be getting more severe. In addition, according to the Domestic Homicide Report for 2008, published by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, intimate partner homicides increased by 25% in 2008 and arguments accounted for the majority (82.4%) of these homicides in New York State. Counties outside New York City reported a 45% increase in intimate partner homicides in 2008. While the legislature has enacted various measures to advance protections for victims of domestic abuse, it is critical to ensure that these measures are not eroded and that victims have access to meaningful protections from their abusers.
When the family offense statute was passed to enable people to apply for civil orders of protection, the Legislature recognized that preventing abuse is an essential goal of the law. The Legislature recognized that victims should not have to wait for another family offense before an order is extended and that protection from further abuse and prevention of additional violence is a primary goal of the family offense statute.
This bill seeks to strengthen current provisions of the law to protect victims of domestic violence. Current law permits extension of orders of protection for a reasonable period of time upon a showing of special circumstances. This bill permits victims with existing orders of protection who are seeking to prevent a recurrence of domestic abuse to extend their order for a reasonable period of time upon a showing of good cause or consent of the parties. The bill further requires the court to articulate the basis for its decision on the record.
Applicants may apply for extensions for various reasons to ensure their safety. For example, the existing court order may have worked in preventing domestic abuse, and/or there are circumstances that may cause the parties to interact. Such interaction may be as a result of pending litigation, the initiation of litigation, compliance with the terms of divorce or family court agreements or judgments, meeting the needs of children in common including following visitation orders, or the resurfacing of the respondent for one reason or another, including release from prison to name a few. An applicant's request for an extension should be viewed in the context of the facts of the case, including-present circumstances, past abuse by the respondent, threats of abuse by the respondent and relevant information concerning the safety and protection of the protected persons with the primary goal to prevent a recurrence of abuse. It is not necessary for the court to find that abuse has occurred during the pendency of the order to justify extending the order. In addition, the fact that abuse has not occurred during the pendency of an order shall not, in itself, constitute sufficient ground for denying or failing to extend the order, The purpose of these civil proceedings - as distinguished from criminal proceedings - is primarily to protect the physical and emotional safety of the victim, as well as to end the family disruption (Section 812 (2)(b)).
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY : 03/09/09 REFERRED TO CHILDREN AND FAMILIES 05/12/09 REPORTED AND COMMITTED TO CODES
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS : None.
EFFECTIVE DATE : Immediately. Shall also apply to all orders entered prior to such effective date, and to all actions and proceedings pending on or commenced on or after such effective date.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2972--A 2009-2010 Regular Sessions IN SENATE March 9, 2009 ___________Introduced by Sen. SAMPSON -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Children and Families -- recommitted to the Committee on Children and Families in accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- reported favorably from said committee and committed to the Committee on Codes -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said commit- tee AN ACT to amend the family court act, in relation to the extension of orders of protection in family offense proceedings THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The opening paragraph of section 842 of the family court act, as amended by chapter 579 of the laws of 2003, is amended to read as follows: An order of protection under section eight hundred forty-one of this part shall set forth reasonable conditions of behavior to be observed for a period not in excess of two years by the petitioner or respondent or for a period not in excess of five years upon (i) a finding by the court on the record of the existence of aggravating circumstances as defined in paragraph (vii) of subdivision (a) of section eight hundred twenty-seven of this article; or (ii) a finding by the court on the record that the conduct alleged in the petition is in violation of a valid order of protection. Any finding of aggravating circumstances pursuant to this section shall be stated on the record and upon the order of protection. THE COURT MAY ALSO, UPON MOTION, EXTEND THE ORDER OF PROTECTION FOR A REASONABLE PERIOD OF TIME UPON A SHOWING OF GOOD CAUSE OR CONSENT OF THE PARTIES. THE FACT THAT ABUSE HAS NOT OCCURRED DURING THE PENDENCY OF AN ORDER SHALL NOT, IN ITSELF, CONSTITUTE SUFFI- CIENT GROUND FOR DENYING OR FAILING TO EXTEND THE ORDER. THE COURT MUST ARTICULATE A BASIS FOR ITS DECISION ON THE RECORD. Any order of protection issued pursuant to this section shall specify if an order ofEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD01556-04-0 S. 2972--A 2
probation is in effect. Any order of protection issued pursuant to this section may require the petitioner or the respondent: S 2. The second undesignated paragraph of section 842 of the family court act, as amended by chapter 222 of the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows: The court may also award custody of the child, during the term of the order of protection to either parent, or to an appropriate relative within the second degree. Nothing in this section gives the court power to place or board out any child or to commit a child to an institution or agency.
[The court may also upon the showing of special circumstances extend the order of protection for a reasonable period of time.]S 3. This act shall take effect immediately, and shall apply to all orders entered prior to such effective date, and to all actions and proceedings pending on or commenced on or after such effective date.