Am I eligible to file for a protection order against domestic abuse?
A protection order against domestic abuse protects you from abuse by any person in one of the following relationships with you:
- your spouse or ex-spouse
- anyone with whom you are/were in a "significant romantic relationship" (if the relationship has ended, it must have ended within the last 12 months);
- anyone with whom you have had a child or with whom you are expecting a child (even if you were never married);
- your parent or child (through blood, adoption, guardianship, or marriage); or
- your sibling or half-sibling (through blood, adoption, or marriage).*
To decide if your relationship is a “significant romantic relationship,” the judge will consider:
- the length of the relationship;
- how often you and the other party interact; and
- the characteristics and type of relationship.**
If someone who is not in one of these relationships with you is hurting you, there are different laws designed to protect you. You may be eligible for a protection order against stalking, physical injury, or a crime of violence.
The law does not address the process of how a minor (person under 18 years of age) can get a protection order. If you are a minor, speak to a local domestic violence organization for help on how to get a protection order.
* SDCL § 25-10-3.1
** SDCL § 25-10-3.2