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Legal Information: Tennessee

Restraining Orders

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Laws current as of
November 27, 2023

Am I eligible to file for a protection order?

You can file for a protection order if you experienced, or were threatened with or placed in fear of, any of the following:

A family or household member is defined as:

  • your spouse or ex-spouse;
  • someone you live with or used to live with;
  • anyone you are dating or used to date;
  • anyone you are having a sexual relationship with or used to have a sexual relationship with;
  • a same-sex partner you’ve lived with, dated, or had a sexual relationship with;
  • anyone you are related to by blood or adoption; 
  • anyone you are related to by marriage or used to be related to by marriage; or
  • the child of someone in any of the above relationships, regardless of if you are a minor or an adult.2

Note: If the police respond to an incident of domestic abuse, the officer can file for an ex parte order on your behalf if you agree to this in writing. The officer must believe that you are in immediate and present danger of abuse , even if no arrest is made. The officer can file for the order even when the courts are closed.3

1 TN ST §§ 36-3-602(a); 36-3-601(7)
2 TN ST § 36-3-601(5)
3 TN ST § 36-3-619(h)