Throughout the years the Texas legislature has created a system of legal protections for victims of family violence.
Protective orders have been the primary civil legal remedy since 1979. The advantage of these orders is the criminal penalty that occurs when the orders are disobeyed. Over time, protective orders have come to protect not only members of the same family but members of the same household and individuals who have or have had a dating relationship and victims of sexual assault as well. The Criminal District Attorney's Office is committed to helping these victims obtain enforceable protective orders.
A protective order is a civil court order that tells an individual not to commit any further acts of violence. The District Attorney's Office does not issue the protective order. Only a District Court judge can grant a protective order. Most protective orders are in place for two years. A protective order takes at least two weeks to obtain and requires at least one appointment in our office and at least one court appearance.
How to Apply
- Persons seeking to apply for a protective order may contact the Criminal District Attorney's Office during business hours, 8 am to 3 pm, at 469-376-4760.
- After a preliminary screening, the applicant may complete a Protective Order Application (PDF) and submit it to a Protective Order Prosecutor.
- Upon meeting the legal requirements of the initial inquiry, an applicant meets with a prosecutor, who then handles the case from the intake stage, through filing and disposition of the application.
Protective Order Forms
- Who qualifies for a Protective Order?
- Members of a dating relationship
- Members of the same household:
- Individuals living together in the same dwelling unit without regard to whether they are related
- Individuals who previously lived in a household
- Members of the same family
- Individuals related by blood
- Individuals related by marriage
- Individuals who are former spouses of each other
- Individuals who are the parents of the same child without regard to marriage
- Foster child and foster parent without regard to whether those individuals live together
- Every victim of sexual assault
- Who is entitled to a Protective Order?
Whoever qualifies and who the court finds that family violence has been committed against them and is likely to be committed against them in the future.
- Who can file for a Protective Order?
Any adult member of the family or of a dating relationship.