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Texas Family Law Courts: Protective Orders and Name Changes

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on protective orders and name changes in Texas Family Law. This post is presented by the experienced team at the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC. As a leading Katy, Texas protective orders attorney, we commit to providing insightful and practical guidance. We help navigate the complexities of family violence and the legal processes related to protective orders and name changes.

This article aims to offer clarity and support to individuals in Katy, Texas, and surrounding areas. It helps those who seek to understand their legal options and rights in these sensitive areas. Join us as we delve into the nuances of these critical aspects of family law, ensuring that you become well-informed and prepared for the legal journey ahead.

Family violence in Texas refers to acts or threats by a family or household member that aim to cause physical harm, bodily injury, or sexual assault, or instill a reasonable fear of such actions. This includes child abuse within the household or family. Victims of family violence can seek legal protection through a protective order, a critical tool provided by the court to ensure safety and prevent further abuse. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC emphasizes the importance of recognizing and taking legal action against family violence, guiding clients through the process of obtaining protective orders to safeguard their well-being.

Dating violence, which affects individuals in intimate relationships, involves actions or threats with the intent to cause physical harm, injury, assault, or instill fear. Victims or perpetrators of dating violence can find themselves in complex legal situations, requiring an understanding of their rights and the available legal protections. The law in Texas allows individuals in such relationships to seek protective orders, offering a legal pathway to address and prevent dating violence.

Eligibility Criteria for Filing Protective Orders

Any adult in a household affected by family violence can apply for a protective order, either on their behalf or on behalf of another household member, including children. Authorities like the Attorney General of Texas, District Attorneys, or the Department of Family and Protective Services can also file for these orders. In cases of dating violence, any adult involved in the relationship is eligible to apply. Demonstrating the occurrence or likelihood of violence is key to obtaining a protective order, and the testimony of a victim can be pivotal in this process.

Consequences for Perpetrators of Family Violence

If a court determines family violence has occurred, the perpetrator will face several restrictions. These include prohibitions on further acts of violence, communication with the victim, and presence near the victim’s home, business, or children’s schools. The protective order also restricts harassing behavior and, importantly, can prohibit the perpetrator from possessing firearms. Violating a protective order can lead to jail time, deportation for non-citizens, and potential criminal charges.

Enforcement and Duration of Protective Orders

Law enforcement is a key player in the execution of protective orders, being promptly informed by court clerks about these orders. This ensures swift and decisive action for their enforcement. In Katy, Texas, your attorney will advise that protective orders can be effective for up to two years, although this duration can vary depending on each individual case’s circumstances. Understanding the extent and limitations of protective orders is crucial for both the victims, who seek protection and safety, and the perpetrators, who need to be aware of the severe legal repercussions of any violations. 

To change a minor’s name, a parent, legal guardian, or managing conservator must obtain court approval. This process involves filing a petition, stating the child’s current name, address, and the reason for the name change. Parents or conservators often seek to align the child’s surname with the rest of the family, especially after adoption or paternity adjudication. The other parent must be notified, and if the child is over ten, their consent is required.

Adult Name Changes: Process and Considerations

Adults commonly associate name changes with divorce, particularly when women revert to their maiden names. They can file a separate petition for a name change. In this petition, they provide details about their current name, the reasons for the change, and any criminal background. This ensures the court that the change isn’t an attempt to evade legal issues. Background checks and fingerprinting are part of this process unless the name change is part of a divorce proceeding.

Navigating the legal aspects of protective orders and name changes can be a complex and emotional journey. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, as your trusted Katy, Texas protective orders attorney, is here to provide unwavering support and expert legal counsel. Our team of dedicated family law attorneys is available for free consultations six days a week. We offer personalized guidance and detailed information tailored to your unique circumstances. Whether you are facing challenges related to family violence or considering a name change, our skilled attorneys are committed to assisting you every step of the way in these sensitive matters.

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  3. Committing family violence has a dramatic effect on many phases of your life.
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