Did you know that Maryland retains records of your peace or protective order cases in its own database even after your case is concluded?

Starting in 2020, the Governor’s Office of Crime Prevention and Policy created the Domestic Violence Central Repository. The Repository is a database that stores records of peace and protective order cases issued by Maryland Courts. The current legal authority is found in § 4-512.1 of the Maryland Family Law Article and in COMAR

The Repository does not store expired peace orders or protective orders which a individual has filed but which a judge had dismissed at the first stage of a case. Instead the Repository includes interim, temporary, and final protective orders as well as  interim, temporary, and final peace orders.

Only certain organizations (Victim Service Providers) have access to this information. Victim Service Providers may consist of:

  1. Domestic Violence Shelters
  2. Rape Crisis Centers
  3. Organizations which provide assistance to victims of domestic violence or sexual assault
  4. Other organizations which are not for profit but do not fit into the first three categories.
  5. Law Enforcement

While the storage of this information deservedly serves victims of domestic violence, the lingering presence of your shielded case on the Repository could affect you long after your case has been “shielded” (removed from the Maryland Court system database by a judge).

Therefore, even if a judge shields your case, you must nevertheless provide complete and accurate information to a prospective employer or other entity about any such prior case of yours should you be asked.