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protection orders

Victims of domestic violence have the right to petition (apply) the court for a civil order of protection against an individual who has or is threatening to cause harm to you or your children. Between the hours of 8a-4p, M-F, you may appear before a magistrate to request an emergency protection order. If granted, the respondent will be ordered not to contact or communicate with you in any way until a full hearing. During the full hearing, both you and the respondent must appear to discuss why the order should remain in place for up to five years.

As this can be an intimidating process, our advocates can walk you through every step of the way.

Five different types of protection orders

  1. Temporary Protection Orders (TPO)
    • Issued by a Municipal courts to protect victims of domestic violence, menacing by stalking and certain other crimes from the defendant during the duration of the criminal proceedings. 
    • These expire at the end of the case and you may want to request the issuance of a No Contact Order as part of the sentence.
  2. Criminal Anti-Stalking Protection Orders (ASPO)
    • If someone is causing you to believe you’ll be physically harmed or causes mental distress and is charged with menacing by stalking, you may request that the criminal court issue a criminal temporary anti-stalking protection order.
  3. Civil Stalking or Sexually Oriented Offense Protection Orders (SSOOPO)
  4. Civil Protection Order (CPO)
    • Issued by a Domestic Relations Court to protect victims of domestic violence and family or household members.
    • Can apply for CPO if you are: related to the person causing you harm; living or lived with the respondent during the past five years; were previously married to the respondent; have a child with the respondent.
  5. Anti-Stalking Civil Protection Order (ASCPO)
    • Issued by Common Pleas Court to protect victims of stalking.
    • Can apply for an ASCPO if: you can show that the respondent, person causing you harm, is stalking you or you have been the victim of a sexually oriented offense. Documentation, as well as your testimony, is an important part of the case.

Note: Our advocates are not attorneys. You should always also seek the services of an attorney to advise you on legal matters.