Am I eligible for a protection order?
The type of abuse that you have suffered will determine what type of relationship you must have with the abuser in order to be eligible for a protection order.
If you are the victim of stalking or sexual assault, you can file for a protection order against anyone who stalked or sexually assaulted you, including a family or household member.*
If you are the victim of any other sort of harm that is listed in What is the legal definition of domestic abuse in New Mexico?, then you can only get a protection order if the abuser is a "household member."* The following people are considered household members under New Mexico law (which includes family members):
- spouse or former spouse,
- parent, present or former stepparent, present or former parent in-law,
- grandparent, grandparent-in-law,
- child, stepchild, grandchild,
- co-parent of a child; or
- a person with whom you have had a "continuing personal relationship" (dating relationship).**
Note: You do not have to live with any of the above people - they can still be considered a "household member."**
* N.M.S.A. § 40-13-2(D)
** N.M.S.A. § 40-13-2(E)
Can I get a protection order against a same sex partner?
In New Mexico, you may apply for a protection order against a current or former same-sex partner as long as the relationship meets the requirements listed in Am I eligible for a protection 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 New Mexico?
How much does it cost to get a protection order?
There are no fees for filing for a protection order.*
* N.M.S.A. § 40-13-3.1
Do I need an attorney?
No, you do not need an attorney to file for a protection order. However, it may be in your interest to hire an attorney if your abuser is represented by one. A domestic abuse organization in your area may be able to refer you to an attorney or legal aid service who will take your case for free. Go to our NM Finding a Lawyer page to find help in your area.