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What are protective orders?

Sometimes, when a person makes some dangerous choices and becomes a threat to his or her family or loved ones, it is necessary to use the strength of the law to protect vulnerable individuals. Often, this means one partner in a relationship must be kept away from the other partner, and possibly children who are a part of the relationship. To accomplish this protection, Texas offers a number of different protective orders to those in need.

Protective orders serve to create some legally mandated space between an individual and an abusive spouse, partner or other threatening person. These can be short-term, lasting up to 20 days, or long-term, lasting up to two years.

A very basic protective order may be a simple restraining order. Such an order prohibits one individual from contacting the protected party in any way. Sometimes, however, this kind of complete separation is either unnecessary or impractical. It is also possible to acquire a partial restraining order that protects one person from dealing with the other in any private place. This is a common order used to protect one parent from another parent if there is abuse or threat of harm. In this instance, the abusive parent can still enjoy some of his or her parental rights while ensuring that the protected parent does not unreasonably risk his or her safety.

If you are considering obtaining a restraining order against someone, you should speak with a family law attorney immediately. There is no reason to put off your own safety or the safety of your children. With the guidance of an experienced attorney, you can keep yourself and the ones you love safe with the help of the law.

Source: findlaw, "Texas Protective Orders Laws," accessed April 28, 2017

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