Financial Restraining Orders in Oregon Divorce Cases

Financial restraining orders prevent parties from selling or disposing personal property, making extraordinary expenditures, or cancelling insurance during a divorce.

Financial Restraining Orders in Oregon Divorce Cases
In the middle of an divorce? Now is not the time to buy the C8 Corvette Z06 or the Crocodile Louis Vuitton handbag you’ve always wanted. It’s also not the time to set your husband’s belongings on fire in the front yard, or sell all your wife’s things on Craigslist.

A Financial Restraining Order Is Different Than A FAPA Restraining Order

When most people think about restraining orders, they think about domestic violence. FAPA restraining orders are for violence and threats of violence. They have to be applied for, approved by the Court, and then served on the offending party.

By contrast, a financial restraining order is automatic, and has nothing to do with violence. It’s targeted at people disposing of assets during a divorce proceeding.

What Does A Financial Restraining Order Prevent Me From Doing?

The Oregon statute— while quite long– is fairly readable. It was amended slightly in 2021, and the amended version is below.

ORS 107.093 (Financial) Restraining Order; Request For Hearing

(1) After a petition for marital annulment, separation or dissolution is filed and upon service of summons and petition upon the respondent as provided in ORCP 7, a restraining order is in effect against the petitioner and the respondent until a final judgment is issued, until the petition for marital annulment, separation or dissolution is dismissed, or until further order of the court.

(2) The restraining order issued under this section shall restrain the petitioner and respondent from:

(a) Canceling, modifying, terminating or allowing to lapse for nonpayment of premiums any policy of health insurance, homeowner or renter insurance or automobile insurance that one party maintains to provide coverage for the other party or a minor child of the parties, or any life insurance policy that names either of the parties or a minor child of the parties as a beneficiary.

(b) Changing beneficiaries or covered parties under any policy of health insurance, homeowner or renter insurance or automobile insurance that one party maintains to provide coverage for the other party or a minor child of the parties, or any life insurance policy.

(c) Transferring, encumbering, concealing or disposing of property in which the other party has an interest, in any manner, without written consent of the other party or an order of the court, except in the usual course of business or for necessities of life. This paragraph does not apply to payment by either party of:

(A) Attorney fees in the existing action;

(B) Real estate and income taxes;

(C) Mental health therapy expenses for either party or a minor child of the parties; or

(D) Expenses necessary to provide for the safety and welfare of a party or a minor child of the parties.

(d) Making extraordinary expenditures without providing written notice and an accounting of the extraordinary expenditures to the other party. This paragraph does not apply to payment by either party of expenses necessary to provide for the safety and welfare of a party or a minor child of the parties.

(e) Exercising authority as an agent for the other party under a power of attorney described in ORS 127.005 to 127.045, a health care representative for the other party under a form appointing a health care representative described in ORS 127.505 to 127.660 or an attorney-in-fact for the other party under a declaration for mental health treatment described in ORS 127.700 to 127.737, unless the power of attorney, form appointing a health care representative or declaration for mental health treatment otherwise provides.

(3) Either party restrained under this section may apply to the court for further temporary orders, including modification or revocation of the restraining order issued under this section.

(4) The restraining order issued under this section shall also include a notice that either party may request a hearing on the restraining order by filing a request for hearing with the court.

(5) A copy of the restraining order issued under this section shall be attached to the summons.

(6) A party who violates a term of a restraining order issued under this section is subject to imposition of remedial sanctions under ORS 33.055 based on the violation, but is not subject to:

(a) Criminal prosecution based on the violation; or

(b) Imposition of punitive sanctions under ORS 33.065 based on the violation.

Are There Exceptions To The Financial Restraining Order?

Yes. The first is written consent of the other party. The second is an order of the Court (following a motion, affidavit or declaration, and possibly a hearing). The third is embedded in the statute (e.g. you can make expenditures, but they cannot be “extraordinary”).

If you need help enforcing or making an exception to a financial restraining order, speak with a divorce attorney today.

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