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Temporary and extended protection orders in Tennessee

Tennessee offers two distinct forms of protection orders, which are invaluable tools for victims who suffer from sexual assault, stalking and domestic abuse. If you are considering filing for a protection order, understanding the options can help you choose the protection order that will best help you take control of your situation. Both temporary and extended protection orders feature distinct elements that may be right for you.

In general, a temporary protection order can be issued by a judge who believes that the party seeking protection is facing "immediate and present danger" of abuse. Temporary protection orders are often used as bridge protection while a victim is seeking a longer-lasting extended protection order. Such orders are possible to obtain "ex parte," in which case the order can be issued without any prior notice being given to the accused abuser, and notably without the abuser needing to be present in the courtroom when the protection order is granted. In many cases, the victim will simultaneously request a temporary protection order and an extended protection order. Temporary protection orders generally last 15 days, but may be extended until the date of an associated hearing for an extended protection order.

Extended protection orders last longer, usually for terms of one year. However, unlike a temporary protection order, they require a court hearing in which both parties are afforded the opportunity to appear in court and represent their case. If a victim wishes for an extended protection order to last longer than the initial term of one year, he or she may seek to have it extended one year at a time.

Any individual who is suffering domestic abuse, stalking or sexual assault should seriously consider filing for a protection order. Experienced legal counsel can help any victim of abuse take steps to protect him or herself and take back control of his or her life and safety.

Source:, "Protection Orders for Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking," accessed July 05, 2016

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