Who can get a protective order?
In Louisiana, anyone who has one of the following relationships to the abuser can be eligible for a protective order:
- a family member, which includes:
- a spouse or former spouse;
- a child, step-child, foster child, or grandchild;
- a parent, step-parent, foster parent, grandparents;
- the other parent of the abuser’s child;
- the other foster parent of the abuser’s foster child;
- other relatives, which could include relationships such as a great-aunt (known in the law as an “ascendant”) or grand-nephew (known in the law as a “descendant”);
- a household member, which includes:
- someone who live(d) with the abuser in the same home and is/was in a sexual or intimate relationship with the abuser;1
- any child who live(d) in the same home as the abuser;
- a dating partner, which is defined as someone who is/was involved in a sexual or intimate relationship with the abuser, regardless of if they ever lived together.2
1 LA R. S. 46: 2132(4)
2 LA R. S. 46: 2151(B)
Can I get a protective order against a same-sex partner?
In Louisiana, you may apply for a protective order against a current or former same-sex partner as long as the relationship meets the requirements listed in Who can get a protective order? You must also be the victim of an act of domestic abuse, which is explained here What is the legal definition of domestic abuse in Louisiana?
You can find information about LGBTQIA victims of abuse and what types of barriers they may face on our LGBTQIA Victims page.
Can I get a protective order if I'm a minor?
Yes. However, as a minor (a person under the age of 18), you will need a parent, an adult household member or a district attorney to file for the protective order on your behalf.1
For the definition of a family or household member, see Who can get a protective order?
1 LA R.S. 46: 2133(D)
Can I keep my insurance coverage even though my abusive spouse was the policyholder?
Probably. If you are a victim of domestic abuse and you are covered under your spouse’s policy, you may be able to convert that insurance coverage to your own policy for you and your dependent children upon the judgment of divorce or judgment of legal separation from the abusive spouse. The converted policy is supposed to provide the same benefits, including deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments, as the policy from which coverage is being converted.1
In order to convert the coverage to your own individual policy, you should:
- Notify the health insurance company that you want to convert your spouse’s policy into your own individual policy within 30 days of receiving the notice of termination; AND
- Provide the health insurance company with a copy of the divorce decree or separation order.1
1 LA R.S. 22:1078(C)
Are there fees to get a protective order? Do I need a lawyer?
Nothing. There are no filing fees and court costs for this process.1 For other questions about filing, you can find contact information for courthouses on the LA Courthouse Locations page.
Although you do not need a lawyer to file for a protective order, it may be to your advantage to seek legal counsel, especially if the abuser has a lawyer. If you cannot afford a lawyer but want one to help you with your case, you can find contact information for lawyers on our LA Finding a Lawyer page.
1 LA R.S. 46:2134(F)
If you are going to be in court without a lawyer, our Preparing for Court – By Yourself section may be useful to you.