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Domestic Violence and Emergency Protective Orders | Smith & Weer
Domestic Violence and Emergency Protective Orders | Smith & Weer


An emergency protective order is issued by a court to protect a person from harassment or harm. When court is not available, a police department may be able to issue a short term protective order to prevent domestic violence. In many cases an emergency protective order only lasts for a weekend or holiday, after which time the abused individual must seek a temporary restraining order that lasts a longer.

What are some common indicators a person may become violent?

Many people who harass and harm others like to have control. In many instances, a controlling spouse will limit the other spouse’s access to friends, family, money and a safe place to go in the event things get bad. Controlling people may chose work and living situations that take the other person far away from family, friends and a support network.

How can you get an emergency protective order?

If you are in immediate danger, call 911 or your local law enforcement for help. If there is not an arrest situation and you fear the abuser might try to find and harm you, ask law enforcement if they are authorized to give you some type of emergency protection. Otherwise you or your attorney, like a family law attorney Plano TX trusts, can ask for an emergency order of protection from the court. Your sworn statement under oath is required to make a record of exactly what happened. In most cases you or your attorney will return to court shortly after the issuance of the emergency order to ask for its extension for an appropriate longer time.

In addition to the protective order, how can I make a safety plan?

Once an aggressive person finds out there is an order of protection issued against them, they face jail time and strong penalties for violating any of the terms of the order, include time and place restrictions. The abuser may be angry and seek revenge. The abused person should have a “just in case” plan in the event they need to hide out with friends, avoid detection by borrowing others’ vehicles, varying their routes to work or school and avoiding detection by social media network technology.

Many victims of domestic and family violence will tell you they never saw the violence coming, some not until it was too late. Too often in the news we hear reports of a couple going through a divorce and a husband pulls up behind his estranged soon to be ex-wife at a stoplight and shoots her dead. In the actual incident, the wife had a protective order against the husband. A piece of paper, however, does not stop a bullet. In addition to knowing how and when to seek a protective order, people facing threats of violence should take additional safety steps to increase their safety.

Scroggins Family LawThanks to our friends and contributors from Scroggins Family Law for their insight into domestic violence and emergency protective orders.

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