Lufkin, TX asked in Criminal Law, Divorce and Family Law for Texas

Q: Is there a specific time frame for a protective order to be processed, and granted?

I filed a protective order against my husband almost 2 months ago. Every time I call the courthouse to check on the status "the lady" never returns my call. My last conversation with "the lady" 3 weeks, she stated she triage the PO and she's the only one, so it may take some time. I need to know my options so I can proceed with filing my divorce. I don't want to file for divorce without the PO in place.

2 Lawyer Answers

Matthew Valley

Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Austin, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: From the Texas Family Code:

Sec. 84.001. TIME SET FOR HEARING. (a) On the filing of an application for a protective order, the court shall set a date and time for the hearing unless a later date is requested by the applicant. Except as provided by Section 84.002, the court may not set a date later than the 14th day after the date the application is filed.

(b) The court may not delay a hearing on an application in order to consolidate it with a hearing on a subsequently filed application.

Sec. 84.002. EXTENDED TIME FOR HEARING IN DISTRICT COURT IN CERTAIN COUNTIES. (a) On the request of the prosecuting attorney in a county with a population of more than two million or in a county in a judicial district that is composed of more than one county, the district court shall set the hearing on a date and time not later than 20 days after the date the application is filed or 20 days after the date a request is made to reschedule a hearing under Section 84.003.

(b) The district court shall grant the request of the prosecuting attorney for an extended time in which to hold a hearing on a protective order either on a case-by-case basis or for all cases filed under this subtitle.

If you are using the county attorney’s office to facilitate obtaining a P.O. then there can often be delays; however, P.O. matters are supposed to be heard fairly quickly upon the request of the party applying for the P.O. If the County Attorney or whoever is assisting you is delaying the matter without your consent then it might be time to talk to a another attorney about handling the PO.

Kiele Linroth Pace

Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Austin, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: The private attorney handling your divorce could almost certainly file the protective order instead of relying on the overworked county prosecutor... the customer service would be better because you would be paying for it.

Your husband will have a pretty good idea of what is happening as soon as he is served with the protective order papers.

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