Is posting on Facebook a violation of a restraining order?

Everyone now uses social media heavily, whether it’s for posting holiday photos or communicating their deepest emotions. Connecting with friends, family, and loved ones has become essential thanks to websites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

However, you should think hard before utilizing social media if you are the subject of a restraining order in New Jersey.

Using social media and posting on Facebook violates a restraining order. However, the things you do there could get you into legal trouble. Contact a lawyer immediately to learn how social media can harm your case. 

Is posting on Facebook a violation of a restraining order?

If the restraining order says “do not contact,” you can’t, but only if the post is about the person who got the order.

Posting about the weather or anything else that has nothing to do with the person is not against this rule. If the protection order doesn’t say you can’t talk to the other person, then posting on Facebook won’t break it.

Is posting on Facebook a violation of a restraining order
Is posting on Facebook a violation of a restraining order

Do social media interactions go under a restraining order?

You cannot contact the protected person if they have issued a no-contact order against you. Reaching out to them virtually also entails using social media.

On social media, restrictions go beyond just texting and calling. You cannot “poke” them on Facebook, like their posts, leave comments on them, tag their accounts, or add them as friends if you are subject to a restraining order. 

If you are subject to a no-contact order in New Jersey, you are not allowed to let them know you are there in any way, whether doing so would endanger them.

There are numerous instances in real life where people were detained and imprisoned for loving and tagging the protected person. 

More instances of restraining order violations in real life via social media

A lady in Tennessee was detained in 2009 for violating a protective order by “poking” another woman on Facebook. According to the court, a digital poke is a kind of communication. 

A woman in Beverly was detained for monitoring her daughter, who had filed a restraining order against her via her Pinterest account.

When the youngster saw a notification on her Pinterest account, she filed the complaint. 

2016 saw the arrest of a woman who had been told not to speak to her sister-in-law yet tagged her in a Facebook post.

In 2015, a man who had been told not to speak to his ex-girlfriend attempted to disobey the ruling by following her on Instagram. Later, it gave rise to charges of crime. 

What is Service with a PFA Order Means?

If a Protection from Abuse (PFA) order has recently been served on you, you probably need to make some quick adjustments. A PFA order is a court’s directive directing you to do or not do particular actions.

If you don’t comply with the court’s directives, you risk being charged with indirect criminal contempt of the PFA order.

By breaking the PFA order, you risk spending up to $1,000 in fines and up to six months in jail. Study the order completely.

Make sure you comprehend its conditions. Whether you think the order is important or neither, you must fully abide by every requirement.

Even if you disagree with the PFA order’s breadth or conditions or think the person it protects lacked sufficient proof of actual or threatened domestic abuse to warrant the order, you must abide by it.

The protected person can usually get temporary PFA orders. When the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed the state’s Protection from Abuse Act in 1990, it did so with that intention.

A temporary PFA order may be issued by the court under Section 6107(b) of the Act based on the protected person’s testimony without the knowledge of the restrained party.

Temporary PFA orders are vulnerable to abuse since they are relatively simple to obtain. You might not have been deserving of PFA restraint.

You still have to abide by the PFA’s temporary order. If you disagree with a PFA order, you should not disobey or break it.

Challenging a PFA Temporary Order:

You should appeal a temporary PFA order in court rather than disobeying it and maybe breaking the law.

The court must give the individual who is being restricted a hearing within ten business days of making the temporary order, according to Protection from Abuse Act Section 6107(a).

You have the chance to demonstrate at that hearing that you did not abuse or threaten to abuse the protected person and that you do not pose a threat to do so through your testimony, exhibits, and the testimony of other witnesses.

The court must hear both parties to reach a just and equitable ruling. After issuing an ex parte temporary PFA order, the hearing is the first opportunity for the court to hear your side of the story.

Do take a PFA order into court if you find it unpleasant. Don’t disregard it or transgress it.

The protected person has the burden of proving abuse or threats of harm. In court, your opposing testimony might win out. When you hire seasoned criminal defense lawyer Joseph D.

Lento and the Lento Law Firm, you have a particularly good chance of successfully contesting an unfair, unjustified, and excessive PFA order.

Attorney Lento can demonstrate that the protected party did not merit the court’s temporary PFA order and that the court should not convert the temporary order into a permanent order because of his extensive litigation expertise and familiarity with Pennsylvania PFA orders.

You will stand the best oppertunity of avoiding the costs, inconveniences, and risks associated with a permanent PFA order if you retain attorney Lento and the Lento Law Firm.

Do seek the advice of a knowledgeable attorney. Don’t attempt it alone.

A Permanent PFA Order’s Burden

Permanent PFA orders can be burdensome and cause a person to lose their home, employment, money, connections, and way of life.

By Section 6108 of the Protection from Abuse Act, the court may order the person under restraint to perform a variety of activities as well as refrain from performing others. A PFA order may grant Child custody to the protected party, preventing the restrained party from seeing the kids.

The protected person may be given the residence due to a PFA order that removes the restricted person from it. The recipient of a PFA may also be required to pay spousal and child support.

PFA orders may also demand that the subject of a restraint surrender any firearms that the subject may own.

Finally, PFA orders may forbid the individual who is being restricted from communicating with the protected person or children, whether in person or over the phone.

No-contact orders might ban the restrained person from visiting an area where the protected person or children might be present, such as a home, school, workplace, or another venue.

No-contact orders may also prohibit communication with the protected person or children via phone, email, text message, social media, or other distant communication.

The movement and relationships of the person under restraint can be significantly hampered and restricted by no-contact orders.

They also offer actual PFA violation traps. Do be mindful of the tremendous weight a PFA order carries. Do not disregard a PFA order.

Facebook’s Dangerous Role in the PFA Orders

Your use of Facebook or other social media could result in a charge that you breached the PFA order, which is one of the most serious risks associated with a PFA no-contact order.

Sending the protected person Facebook private messages is against a stringent no-contact order. The same may be said for a Facebook post that the constrained person directs at the protected person.

A PFA no-contact order could be broken by accepting a friend request on Facebook. Even a constrained person’s Facebook “like” on the protected person’s post sends the protected person a message.

Each of these Facebook usages entails communication between the constrained and protected people.

Do be aware of Facebook’s PFA hazards. Do more than carry on with your Facebook activities.

If you are under a PFA no-contact order, you must use social media carefully and utilize Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or other comparable platforms.

What you plan to send to one person or group may appear as a message to the person the PFA order protects, depending on how the social media network is configured.

The protected party may be accidentally engaged when you are trying to message, like, dislike, friend request, or otherwise interact remotely with a third party.

In such a case, your aim should govern the situation. But proving intent might be challenging. Facebook use while under a PFA no-contact order may be so risky that you should swear off using it for a while.

Do think about reducing your Facebook usage until your PFA obligations are clear. Please Don’t take a chance when using Facebook because it can violate the PFA.


Posting on Facebook violates a restraining order if the post contains content about the person. In real life, disobeying a restraining order can have severe consequences, including jail.

There is no way to say what every person should do to stay within bounds because the events that led to the order will determine the conditions of contact or lack thereof.

But you should also refrain from contacting people online as you should while you’re out and about. 

We are constantly warned that what we do online can and does affect our “real lives.” Teenagers are informed that colleges will monitor their online postings.

The caution of prospective employees is urged online for concern that careless remarks may harm their prospects of landing a job.

The same unquestionably applies to someone who is under a no-contact order. Don’t expect that substituting virtual crimes for actual ones will get you away with it.

The world and the internet are becoming more and more similar as we live in the hyper-real era.

You can experience the effects of your online activities everywhere since the virtual world is real.

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