Safety is a tricky thing in the judiciary process — when you need it, you need it right away. But paperwork takes longer than that. The law has processes that offer immediate assistance, like law enforcement or calling 911. But in the long-term, you may want a protective order.
Protective orders in Dallas, as the Dallas County District Attorney’s office describes, do not provide you with a bulletproof vest, but they may get you the distance you need at home or at work if you fear for your safety.
Protective order application
You need a current state picture I.D., a complete address where your spouse is, and the address or addresses you want protection at. If you are a spouse who is a victim of recent physical abuse or threats, you can apply.
If necessary, once you file, a judge may order a temporary ex parte order to give you protection while the paperwork goes through. Officials serve the paperwork to your spouse and they schedule a hearing to properly analyze the case.
Once a judge looks everything over, they may issue a police-enforceable protective order that stipulates a number of things.
Protective order details
The protective order establishes that your spouse must stay more than 500 feet from the addresses you provided. The protective order does not order them to stay 500 feet from your body.
The order instructs them to not commit family violence or threaten you further. It might order them to go to specialized counseling or, in some cases, waive the waiting period after filing for divorce.
Divorce has its complications, and they may get worse if you fear for your safety during the proceedings. But a protective order may provide you some peace of mind for up to two years or even more.