Overview of a Protection from Abuse Order
Sadly, there exist marriages in which one of the spouses abuses the other. In such a situation, it may become necessary for the abused spouse to obtain a protection from abuse order. There are a number of factors to bear in mind when it comes to a protection from abuse order.
Applying for a Protection from Abuse Order
The first step in obtaining a protection from abuse order is filing a petition with the court. An attorney can prepare a petition for a protection from abuse order. If an attorney is representing a client in a divorce case, this is an example of the documents that professional prepares.
If a person is not represented by an attorney, courts in Pennsylvania do maintain standard for petitions for a protection from abuse order. They are fairly simply to complete. Nonetheless, because they are standard forms, they do not necessarily meet every possible circumstance. This reality underscores the importance of considering retaining a lawyer when in need of this type of order.
Temporary Protection from Abuse Order
Once the court has had the chance to do a preliminary review of the petition, a judge issues a temporary protection from abuse order. Because of the nature of abuse, courts understand the importance of getting an order – event a temporary one – in place as soon as possible. The temporary order remains in effect until the court conducts a hearing.
Final Protection from Abuse Order
If after a hearing the court finds that there is credible evidence to support the accusations of abuse in the petition, a judge issues a final protection from abuse order. In Pennsylvania, a final protection from abuse order can remain in effect for up to three years. After that, if a concern persists regarding the perpetrator of abuse, the petitioner needs to return to court to obtain additional relief.
Enforcing a Protection from Abuse Order
If the abuser violates the terms and conditions of either a temporary or final protection from abuse order, the petitioner can obtain enforcement of the order. The first step is to notify the police of the violation of the terms of the order. The next step is to file a motion with the court detailing the violation and seeking enforcement of the order. In addition, a motion can ask the court to impose sanctions on the person who violated the terms and conditions of the protection from abuse order.