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Bill regarding protective order length rules being considered

The rules regarding protective orders here in Texas can have very big impacts on domestic violence victims in the state. This includes the rules on how long such an order can last.

Generally, the maximum amount of time a permanent protective order related to domestic abuse can be in effect here in Texas is two years. However, state law does create a couple of exceptions in which orders with longer effective periods can be formed.

One is if the person the protective order is against has had at least two past protective orders issued against them in regards to their victim. The other is if the victim was seriously injured by the perpetrator.

When one of these special circumstances is present, a protective order can be given an effective period of up to life.

A bill has been proposed in Texas which would add another set of circumstances that would allow for a protective order lasting more than two years. Under the bill, such an order could be given when the domestic abuse perpetrator committed acts that would be considered felony family violence against the victim. Reportedly, a victim wouldn’t be required to turn to police reports to prove that such acts occurred. Rather, they could use different evidence.

Questions regarding how long of a protective order they may be able to qualify for are among the many questions domestic violence victims may have when seeking out legal protections. A variety of things can impact what kind of protective order a domestic violence victim could qualify for, what kind of protective order terms would be best suited for their situation and what issues arise for them during the course of pursuing such an order. Family law attorneys can answer protective order questions family violence victims have and provide them with compassionate guidance as they seek to get the legal protections they need.

Source: kxan, “Protective orders could get needed extensions with proposed law,” Lauren Lanmon, March 10, 2017

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