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What Happens If I Violate a Domestic Violence Restraining Order?

If you're involved in a family violence matter, the alleged victim – whether it be a family or household member – might ask the court for a restraining order against you. If it is granted, you would be prohibited from engaging in certain conduct, such as going to the person's home or place of employment. You will also be required to surrender any firearms you might have. Adhering to the terms of a restraining order is crucial, as a violation could result in your being charged with an offense. If you're convicted, you could be sentenced to jail time.

What Types of Conduct Is in Violation of a Restraining Order?

Restraining orders are issued as an extra level of protection for a person who alleges they are a victim of domestic violence. They must petition the court to get the order. A judge will consider a variety of factors before determining whether or not to grant the request.

If a restraining order is issued in your name, there will be various conditions placed upon you. The specific terms depend on your circumstances. Regardless, any condition could make it difficult to live your life as you once did.

Types of acts that could be considered a restraining order violation include, but are not limited to:

  • Communicating with the person named in the order
  • Going to any location where the person named in the order might be
  • Going to a child care facility, home, or school where a child named in the order might be
  • Possessing a firearm
  • Harming any pets of the person named in the order
  • Removing or tampering with a global positioning monitoring system

What's important to note is that you could be charged with a violation if you communicate with the person named in the order directly or indirectly. This means that whether you speak with them yourself or you have someone else talk to them for you, you're committing a crime. If you have to discuss something with the person named in the order, you must go through their attorney.

Additionally, you're not just prohibited from communicating with the person named in the order or going to their home or place of employment. You are also banned from engaging in such action with a member of that person's family or household.

What Are the Penalties for a Restraining Order Violation in Texas?

If you're convicted of violating the terms of a restraining order, you could be facing severe penalties. If this is the first offense, you'll be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $4,000.

If this is your third offense, or if you violated the order by assaulting or stalking the person named in it, you're facing a third-degree felony charge. The conviction penalties include up to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000.

Additionally, you could be charged with not only a restraining order violation but also the underlying offense (if it also constitutes a crime).

If you've been accused of violating a restraining order in Dallas, call Deandra Grant Law at (214) 225-7117 or contact us online. We're ready to protect your rights and freedoms.