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Steps to Getting a Protection From Abuse Order (PFA)

Steps to Getting a PFA

A protection from abuse order, or a PFA, is a restraining order or a protection order that aims to protect victims of abuse. It is a paper signed by the judge that prohibits the abuser from continuing the abuse, or they will face severe legal consequences. If you or a loved one is seeking protection from abuse order, talk to a professional today. 

What are the different types of protection from abuse orders? 

If you or a family member is facing domestic violence, it is vital to seek protection from an abuse order. The different types of protection from abuse orders are: 

  • Emergency protection from abuse order

Emergency protection from abuse orders is given when the courts are closed and a person needs immediate protection from the abuser. Emergency protection from abuse orders only lasts until the next business day, when the courts open up again. 

  • Ex parte protection from abuse order 

An ex parte protection from abuse order is given when the judge thinks you or your minor children are in danger of getting abused again. This protection from abuse order lasts until the court hearing is over, which can take up to 10 days. 

  • A final protection from abuse order 

After hearing the testimony of the victim and the abuser, the judge may give final protection from the abuse order if he deems it necessary. A final protection from abuse order can last up to 3 years. 

Who can get protection from abuse orders? 

Your eligibility to get a protection from abuse order is based on your relationship with the person that you are seeking protection from. This may include abuse from: 

  • Ex-spouse or your current spouse 
  • Sexual or intimate partner 
  • Parent 
  • A person related to you by blood or marriage 

What are the steps for getting a protection from abuse order? 

  • Get the petition at the court. 

You first need to file a petition for a protection from abuse order at your county’s Courthouse of Common Pleas. 

  • Fill out the forms 

You will need to fill out all the necessary forms. You can ask the Courthouse if you do not understand something. 

  • A judge will review your petition and may decide to grant you an ex parte protection from abuse order. 

Your petition will then be given to the judge, who will review your petition. If the judge believes that you or your children need immediate protection, they will grant temporary protection from the abuse order. 

  • The hearing takes place. 

The hearing occurs when the judge decides whether to grant you final protection from the abuse order. 

Are you a victim of abuse? 

If you or a loved one have been abused, do not sit silent and suffer. Schedule a consultation with an experienced lawyer today and get the legal help you deserve. 


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