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Violation of Protective Order

Alleged victims of family violence (commonly referred to as domestic violence) in Texas can apply for protective orders (also known as restraining orders or protection orders) that prohibit alleged offenders from committing further acts of family violence or contacting or even going near the homes of alleged victims (referred to in protective orders as the petitioners). While people who are subject to protective orders (referred to in protective orders as the respondents) might disagree with some of the restrictions that are placed upon them, any violation of the terms of a court order can result in criminal charges.

Exaggerated or false allegations can be common in domestic violence cases, as alleged victims may use criminal charges to gain leverage in contentious divorce or child custody matters. Many alleged violations of protective orders are the result of purely technical violations that involved no criminal intent.

Lawyer for Violation of Protective Order in Plano, TX

Were you recently arrested for any kind of alleged violation of a restraining order in Collin County? Do not say anything to authorities without legal representation. Contact The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy as soon as possible.

Plano criminal defense attorneys Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton represent clients accused of family violence offenses in numerous communities throughout Collin County, including Plano, Allen, Frisco, McKinney, and many others. They can review your case and help you understand all of your legal options when you call 469-304-3422 to schedule a free, confidential consultation.


Collin County Protective Order Violation Information Center


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Types of Violations of Protective Orders in Texas

Texas Family Code § 85.021 establishes that in a protective order, the court can do any of the following:

  • prohibit a party from: removing a child who is a member of the family or household from the possession of a person named in the order or the jurisdiction of the court; transferring, encumbering, or otherwise disposing of property, other than in the ordinary course of business, that is mutually owned or leased by the parties; or removing a pet, companion animal, or assistance animal from the possession or actual or constructive care of a person named in the order;
  • grant exclusive possession of a residence to a party and, if appropriate, direct one or more parties to vacate the residence if the residence is jointly owned or leased by the party receiving exclusive possession and a party being denied possession, is owned or leased by the party retaining possession, or is owned or leased by the party being denied possession and that party has an obligation to support the party or a child of the party granted possession of the residence;
  • provide for the possession of and access to a child of a party if the person receiving possession of or access to the child is a parent of the child;
  • require the payment of support for a party or for a child of a party if the person required to make the payment has an obligation to support the other party or the child; or
  • award to a party the use and possession of specified property that is community property or jointly owned or leased property.

Additionally, people found to have committed family violence may be ordered by the courts under Texas Family Code § 85.022 to complete a battering intervention and prevention program or appropriate counseling. The court can also prohibit such individuals from:

  • committing family violence;
  • communicating either directly with a person protected by an order or a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order, in a threatening or harassing manner, a threat through any person to a person protected by an order or a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order, and if the court finds good cause, in any manner with a person protected by an order or a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order, except through the party's attorney or a person appointed by the court;
  • going to or near the residence or place of employment or business of a person protected by an order or a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order;
  • going to or near the residence, child-care facility, or school a child protected under the order normally attends or in which the child normally resides;
  • engaging in conduct directed specifically toward a person who is a person protected by an order or a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order, including following the person, that is reasonably likely to harass, annoy, alarm, abuse, torment, or embarrass the person;
  • possessing a firearm, unless the person is a peace officer actively engaged in employment as a sworn, full-time paid employee of a state agency or political subdivision; and
  • harming, threatening, or interfering with the care, custody, or control of a pet, companion animal, or assistance animal that is possessed by or is in the actual or constructive care of a person protected by an order or by a member of the family or household of a person protected by an order.

An alleged offender can be charged with a violation of a court order under Texas Penal Code § 25.07 if that person knowingly or intentionally:

  • commits family violence or an act in furtherance of an offense under Texas Penal Code § 20A.02 (trafficking of persons), 22.011 (sexual assault), 22.021 (aggravated sexual assault), or 42.072 (stalking);
  • communicates directly with a protected individual or a member of the family or household in a threatening or harassing manner; a threat through any person to a protected individual or a member of the family or household; or in any manner with the protected individual or a member of the family or household except through the person's attorney or a person appointed by the court, if the violation is of an order described by this subsection and the order prohibits any communication with a protected individual or a member of the family or household;
  • goes to or near any of the following places as specifically described in the order or condition of bond: the residence or place of employment or business of a protected individual or a member of the family or household, or any child care facility, residence, or school where a child protected by the order or condition of bond normally resides or attends;
  • possesses a firearm;
  • harms, threatens, or interferes with the care, custody, or control of a pet, companion animal, or assistance animal that is possessed by a person protected by the order or condition of bond; or
  • removes, attempts to remove, or otherwise tampers with the normal functioning of a global positioning monitoring system (GPS).

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Protective Order Violation Penalties in Collin County

A violation of a court order is generally a Class A misdemeanor. Convictions are punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $4,000.

Protective order violations can become third-degree felony offenses punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000 if the alleged offender:

  • has previously been convicted two or more times of violation of certain court orders or conditions of bond in a family violence, sexual assault or abuse, stalking, or trafficking case or two or more times of a repeated violation of certain court orders or conditions of bond in family violence, sexual assault or abuse, stalking, or trafficking case offense under Texas Penal Code § 25.072, or has previously been convicted of an offense under Texas Penal Code § 25.07 and an offense under Texas Penal Code § 25.072; or
  • has violated the order or condition of bond by committing an assault or the offense of stalking.

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Texas Resources for Violation of Protective Order

Victim Assistance | Collin County Criminal District Attorney — The Victim Assistance Division of the Collin County Criminal District Attorney’s Office provides various services for the victims of domestic assault and many other cases involving serious bodily injury. The Victim Assistance Division also provides courtroom accompaniment and educates crime victims about the criminal justice process. Visit this website to learn more about the TEXAS VINE (Victim Information and Notification Everyday) program and find other resources.

Collin County Criminal District Attorney
2100 Bloomdale Rd., Suite 100
McKinney, TX 75071
(972) 422-1850

Hope's Door — Hope’s Door identifies itself as a comprehensive domestic violence agency serving North Texas. On this website, you can learn more about the services and programs that the agency provides. You can also find information about Hope’s Door’s emergency shelter and Rapid Rehousing.

Outreach Counseling Center
860 F Ave., Suite 100
Plano, TX 75074
(972) 422-2911


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The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy | Plano Protective Order Violation Defense Attorney

If you were arrested in Collin County for allegedly violating a protective order, it will be in your interest to exercise your right to remain silent until you have legal counsel. The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy aggressively defends individuals accused of numerous crimes of domestic violence in Allen, Plano, McKinney, Frisco, and many surrounding areas of Collin County.

Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton are experienced criminal defense lawyers in Plano who will work tirelessly to help you achieve the most favorable outcome to your case, including possibly having your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. Call 469-304-3422 or complete an online contact form to have our attorneys provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case during a free initial consultation.


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