Evidentiary hearing not required to extend domestic violence order – published opinion from Ky Court of Appeals

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Cottrell v. Cottrell

Trial Court entered a DVO against Former Husband after he drove his truck into a house occupied by Former wife and their child in 2015. In 2018, Trial Court granted Former Wife’s motion to extend a Domestic Violence Order against Former Husband for an additional three years. Former Husband was incarcerated for most of the time the DVO had been in effect and remained incarcerated at the time the Court entered the order extending the DVO for an additional three years. Former Husband argued on appeal that the trial court was required to conduct a hearing prior to the reissuance of the DVO and that he was denied meaningful opportunity to appear to contest the motion.

The Court of Appeals found that although due process requires an evidentiary hearing and meaningful opportunity to be heard prior to the entry of a DVO, neither the statute nor due process requires an evidentiary hearing prior to the extension of a DVO. Additionally, the Court of Appeals held that KRS.740(4) does not require proof of additional acts of domestic violence before extending a DVO and may consider all the facts and circumstances, including the nature, extent, and severity of the original acts of domestic violence. The Court of Appeals affirmed the Order of the Trial Court.

Digested by: Emily T. Cecconi