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Restraining Orders in Texas

Divorce can be complicated. This is especially true when one spouse is not forthcoming about all their assets, or when they purposefully disadvantage the other spouse financially during the divorce. Filing a restraining order assures that your interests are kept safe in family law matters. Yet many people are unaware of how a restraining order works, how it differs from a protective order, or the necessary steps for enacting one.

Texas Restraining Orders

A restraining order, sometimes known as a temporary restraining order or temporary injunction, is issued by the court. It dictates the spouses' actions with respect to selling, moving, or transferring community assets during a divorce. It can prevent one or both spouses from transferring marital property, making unusual purchases or investments, changing insurance coverage, or making other decisions that could impact one or both spouses financially.

Restraining orders can also prohibit one or both spouses from incurring new debt, confiscating mail, using harsh or obscene language when speaking to the other spouse, or talking badly about the other in front of the children. A restraining order also determines which spouse will remain in the family home, who will pay the bills, and who will take primary care of the children while the divorce is pending.

Enacting a Restraining Order

A temporary restraining order or temporary injunction is submitted on the day a divorce is filed, and can last until the day the divorce is finalized. The temporary restraining order is only good for fourteen days, and a spouse can file one without giving notice to the other spouse. A temporary injunction is filed with notice or agreement by both parties.

These orders are commonplace in Texas family court, and are often used in divorce cases. When a restraining order is filed, it is usually applied to both spouses, regardless of which spouse filed with the court. The family court can also enforce any restraining order violations against either spouse, regardless of who entered the order with the court.

Enforcing a Restraining Order

Family courts typically treat restraining orders generously, and will grant them as long as the requests are reasonable. If one or both spouses break the restraining order, the violations are brought before the court. The judge can decide if jail time, fines, or redistribution of marital assets are necessary.

Contact a Houston Family Law Attorney Today

Restraining orders exist to help you safeguard your financial interests and well-being during family law matters. If you or a loved one needs a restraining order filed, let the expert family law attorneys at The Law Office of Lori E. Laird, PLLC help. Call the office or contact us today for a free and confidential consultation of your case.

Lori Elaine Laird

Former police officer. Aggressive, experienced trial attorney.


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