Who is a family or household member?

Chapter 209A, the Massachusetts Abuse Prevention Act, defines family or household members as persons who:
a) are or were married to one another;
b) are or were residing together in the same household;
c) are or were related by blood or marriage;
d) having a child in common regardless of whether they have ever married or lived together; or
e) are or have been in a substantive dating or engagement relationship, which shall be adjudged by district, probate or Boston municipal courts, by considering the following factors:
  • the length of time of the relationship;
  • the type of relationship;
  • the frequency of interaction between the parties; and
  • if the relationship has been terminated by either person, the length of time elapsed since the termination of the relationship.