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New domestic violence legislation passed in Texas

The Texas House of Representatives have passed legislation that will hopefully make it easier for law enforcement officials to keep track of individuals that have a history of engaging in domestic violence. Anyone convicted of domestic violence more than three times in our state will now have to register as a repeat offender.

One legislator referred to domestic violence as “a growing epidemic with tragic consequences.” There were 177,983 incidents of domestic abuse reported to law enforcement officers in Texas just in 2011. The hope is that by creating a registration more information will also be made available to possible victims and to the general public.

This legislation is welcome to us that have to deal with this problem, but we likely will not know what kind of effect the new laws will actually have until implemented. It generally takes more than legislative acts to prevent domestic violence from reoccurring. Also, legislation alone will not alleviate the scars that come about for a family when accusations of domestic abuse are made.

Texas family law attorneys understand the various resources that are available for victims of domestic violence. Lawyers also understand strategies that can be tried to protect victims when these laws are ignored. Unfortunately, that occurs more than anyone would imagine.

In any case, if the threat of domestic violence exists attorneys can file for contempt of court, prepare restraining orders and other supporting paperwork, file for temporary and permanent protective orders, and take additional steps to prevent such abuse from filing in the future.

Source: CBS DFW, “Texas House Passes Domestic Violence Registry Legislation,” May 10, 2013

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