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Securing Civil Protection Orders for Teens When Laws Ignore Teens

By Lisa Vollendorf Martin

Teen dating violence is common, but teens may have difficulty securing civil protection orders because state laws governing these orders largely ignore teens. Without clear statutory guidelines for teens, two distinct legal questions are key to their securing orders of protection: standing and legal capacity. Courts in many states have the discretion to permit minors to represent themselves without parent notification, especially when self-representation allows minors to protect their health, safety, and welfare.

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