Divorce is not an easy thing to go through, and this can worsen when you are a survivor of domestic violence. Tennessee laws can help protect you from your abusive spouse and may impact certain areas of your divorce. Tennessee offers many reasons of how the court can base a divorce. No-fault grounds require little proof; however, fault grounds require the filing spouse to prove that grounds exist. The appropriate grounds in a domestic violence case are circumstantial.

Although a court order does not guarantee the abuser will stop trying to hurt the victim, it permits the victim to call the police and have the abuser arrested for violating the order. Before learning about how this will affect your divorce case, you’ll want to know the basics of an order of protection and restraining order.

Order of protection

Your abuser must stop all contact with you for a 12-month period. This means your abuser cannot call, text, email or contact you even via a third party. A judge issues the order, requiring the named individual to stay away from the person who filed for protection. If a judge sees fit, they may grant an extension.

Tennessee courts allow you to file for protection if there is romantic history between the two of you, you lived with each other or are related. If you are fearful that your abuser may carry a gun and has threatened you, you may request that the judge adds a provision to the order. They may add a provision that says the abuser may not purchase or possess a gun during the protective order period.

Restraining order

You do not have to have a romantic history or relation to the abuser when filing a restraining order. The court order requires the abuser to stop all contact with you. Courts issue restraining orders to protect you from imminent danger that could be severe. They are generally valid for 10 years.

If you are involved in an abusive and threatening situation, you may consider consulting with an attorney to guide you through the filing process.