Frequently Asked Questions

Restraining Orders

The Family Abuse Prevention Act of 1981 states that if you are the victim of domestic violence, you can ask the District Attorney to file a criminal complaint. You also have the right to go to the Circuit Court and file a petition requesting any of the following orders for relief:

a) an order restraining your attacker from abusing you;
b) an order directing your attacker to leave your household;
c) an order preventing your attacker from entering your residence, school, business or place of employment;
d) an order awarding you or the other parent custody of or visitation with a minor child or children;
e) an order restraining your attacker from molesting or interfering with minor children in your custody.

You also have the right to sue for losses suffered as a result of the abuse, including medical and moving expenses, loss of earnings or support, and other out-of-pocket expenses for injuries sustained and damage to your property.

Emergency assistance and/or shelter is available when the courts are closed by contacting your local program against domestic violence at 440-4573, 673-7867 or by dialing 911.

For further information, contact Battered Person's Advocacy at 541-673-7867 or 1-800-464-6543 or the 24 hour helpline at 541-440-4573.

To obtain legal aid, call 541-673-1181 during normal business hours.

Instructions and Forms for Obtaining a Restraining Order (PDF Document)

Property Claims

Oregon Finder's Law provides to the finder of valuable property, a process to claim an interest in the property. ORS (Oregon Revised Statute) 98.005 "Rights and duties of finder of money or goods" establishes this process.

98.005 Rights and duties of finder of money or goods.

(1) If any person finds money or goods valued at $100 or more, and if the owner of the money or goods is unknown, such person, within 10 days after the date of the finding, shall give notice of the finding in writing to the county clerk of the county in which the money or goods was found. Within 20 days after the date of the finding, the finder of the money or goods shall cause to be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the county a notice of the finding once each week for two consecutive weeks. Each such notice shall state the general description of the money or goods found, the name and address of the finder and final date before which such goods may be claimed.

(2) If no person appears and establishes ownership of the money or goods prior to the expiration of three months after the date of the notice to the county clerk under subsection (1) of this section, the finder shall be the owner of the money or goods. [1973 c.642 §1; 1989 c.522 §1]

Reporting Drug Offenders

If you believe that you are witnessing or have witnessed drug activity, you can report it by calling the police non-emergency number at 541-440-4471.

It is important to have specific information including the exact location, a description of the suspect, a description of any vehicles involved, (make, model, color, license number), and what the activity consists of.

An officer will be assigned to check the area and take appropriate action, if warranted. If the activity is on going or you suspect that it is, you can contact the Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team at 541-440-4474 or check out the DINT Website for additional information.

Identity Theft

Reduce Your Risk of Identity Theft

What is Identity Theft?

Identity Theft occurs when someone uses your name or personal information, such as your Social Security number, driver's license number, credit card number, telephone number or other account numbers, without your permission. Identity thieves use this information to open credit accounts and make major purchases - all in your name. Information can be used to take over your existing accounts, or to open new accounts. Identity theft can result in damage to your credit rating and denials of credit and job offers.

Protect Your Identity

While there is no guarantee that your identity will never be stolen, there are steps you can take to minimize the risk:

  • Do not give your Social Security number to people or companies that you do not know.
  • Before disclosing any personal information, make sure you know why it is required and how it will be used.
  • Shred information you no longer need that contains personally identifiable information and account numbers. For example, credit card receipts, billing statements and pre-approved credit offers should be shredded before you discard them.
  • Guard your mail from theft. Promptly remove your incoming mail from your mailbox and place outgoing mail in post office collection boxes. Install a locking mailbox if mail theft is a problem in your neighborhood.
  • Keep personal information you have at home and at work in a safe place.
  • Do not carry extra credit cards, your birth certificate or passport, or other cards that display your Social Security number in your wallet or purse. Except when necessary.
  • Create unique passwords and personal identification numbers (PINS) and avoid using easily available information such as mother's maiden name, date of birth, or the last four digits of your Social Security number. Use passwords on your banking and brokerage accounts.
  • Get a copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies at least once each year. Review the reports to be sure no one else is using your identity to open new accounts or to use your existing accounts.

If You Are A Victim.

  • Contact your local police agency and report the crime.
  • Contact the fraud departments of the three major credit bureaus. Request that a "Fraud Alert" be placed on your file and include a statement that creditors must get your permission before any new accounts are opened in your name. Get a copy of your credit report from each credit bureau so that you can dispute any inaccurate information. Check your reports at least every six months.


EQUIFAX Order Credit Report: 800-685-1111
Report Fraud: 800-525-6285

Order Credit Report: 888-397-3742
Report Fraud: 888-397-3742

TRANS UNION Order Credit Report: 800-888-4213
Report Fraud: 800-680-7289

Contact all the creditors involved. Let them know that your accounts may have been used without your permission, or that new accounts have been opened in your name.

Keep a record of all your contacts. Make notes of who you called, when you called and what you reported.