Question from Tea, Can Individuals Obtain a Civil Harassment Restraining Order Under California Law Based on Workplace Harassment?
Answer from AI:
In California, a civil harassment restraining order is a legal tool designed to protect individuals from harassment by someone who is not a close relative. It’s important to note that this is a general explanation and not legal advice. For personalized advice, consult with a legal professional.
What Constitutes Harassment Under California Law?
Under California Code of Civil Procedure Section 527.6, harassment is defined as unlawful violence, a credible threat of violence, or a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person that seriously alarms, annoys, or harasses the person, and that serves no legitimate purpose. The course of conduct must be such as would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress, and must actually cause substantial emotional distress to the petitioner.
What Evidence is Needed to Obtain a Civil Harassment Restraining Order?
To obtain a civil harassment restraining order, the petitioner must provide clear and convincing evidence of harassment. This could include:
- Witness testimonies: In this case, the two individuals can serve as witnesses for each other.
- Medical records: Notes from doctors indicating health issues resulting from the harassment can be used as evidence.
- Social media posts: Posts about the incidents can also serve as evidence, especially if they were made close to the time of the incidents.
- Reports to supervisors: If the individuals reported the incidents to a supervisor, this could also be used as evidence.
Does This Situation Meet the Threshold for a Civil Harassment Restraining Order?
Based on the information provided, it appears that the individuals may have a case for a civil harassment restraining order. The trainer’s actions could be seen as a credible threat of violence and a course of conduct that seriously alarms and harasses. The individuals’ health issues and the continued intimidation could be seen as causing substantial emotional distress.
However, whether this meets the “clear and convincing evidence” standard would be up to a judge to decide. It’s strongly recommended that the individuals consult with a legal professional to discuss their situation and potential legal remedies.
What are the Next Steps?
If the individuals decide to pursue a civil harassment restraining order, they would typically need to:
- Complete the necessary court forms, including a petition detailing the harassment.
- File the forms with the court and pay any required fees (fee waivers are available for those who qualify).
- Attend a court hearing where a judge will decide whether to issue the restraining order.
Again, it’s strongly recommended that the individuals consult with a legal professional to guide them through this process.