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Domestic Violence & Protection From Abuse

Legal Information
Frustrated Woman.

This section of PALawHelp.org has information and resources about Domestic Violence and Protection From Abuse issues in Pennsylvania.

Click on a resource category listed below to see information related to that category.

Find Your Local Domestic Violence Program - Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Help centers across the state provide free, confidential counseling, shelter, legal, and economic services for domestic violence victims and their children. Locate a center near you using your city or zip code; or your current location identified by your mobile device or computer.

Find Legal Assistance to Get Protection from Domestic Violence

Click on the Find Legal Help tab above to locate a legal service provider to assist you in getting protection from domestic violence.

The Protection From Sexual Violence and Intimidation Act

Information from the Pennsylvania Coalition on Domestic Violence about the new Protection From Sexual Violence and Intimidation Act that went into effect on July 1, 2015. The new law extends additional protections to individuals who may not be covered by the provisions of the Protection From Abuse Act.

3 Tips If You Are Planning To Leave An Abusive Relationship (Video)

The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence offers safety tips it you are planning to leave an abusive relationship.

Getting a Protection From Abuse Order - Pennsylvania (Video)

This video from Philadelphia Legal Assistance explains the court process for obtaining a Protection From Abuse Order. The video is part of Philadelphia Legal Assistance's "Make Your Case" video series.

Protection From Abuse

Information from Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network, Inc. on the protection available to you under the Pennsylvania Protection From Abuse Act.

Protection From Abuse: Help Is Just A Phone Call Away (Video)

This video from the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence is a 2 1/2-minute primer on how domestic violence victims may obtain a protection-from-abuse court order against an abusive partner.

Protection From Abuse (Central Pennsylvania)

Information from MidPenn Legal Services for victims of domestic violence on protection orders under a law called the Protection From Abuse Act. This brochure is made possible by a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Protection From Abuse Orders (PFA)

Click the link to view Chapter 9-Protection From Abuse Orders of the Family Law Manual published by North Penn Legal Services. [PDF]

Protection From Abuse (PFA)

Information from Southwestern Pennsylvania Legal Services on Protection From Abuse Orders and on Protection From Sexual Violence and Protection From Intimidation Orders.

What is a Protection From Abuse Order (Video)

This video describes what a Protection From Abuse (PFA) order is and how it can protect you and other family members. (August 2020)

How to Obtain a Civil Protection Order (Video)

This video from the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts explains the process for obtaining a civil protection order from the courts.

How to Obtain a Civil Protection Order (Video)

This video from the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts explains the process for obtaining a civil protection order from the courts.

Protection Orders: How to File for a Protection Order in Pennsylvania (Video)

This video from the Pennsylvania Courts provides detailed step-by-step instructions on how to file for a protection order. The video will prepare victims for what to expect when they file a protection order by offering a detailed description of each step involved in the filing process.

Civil Protection Orders - Bilingual Forms

Bilingual information and forms regarding obtaining protection through a Protection from Abuse Order or a Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence and/or Intimidation Order.

PA Courts Public Access Policy - Filing Requirements in the Courts (Video)

Effective on January 6, 2018, a new Public Access Policy is in effect in Pennsylvania Courts. This policy imposes requirements on anyone filing court documents in the trial and appellate courts to safeguard information in the documents they file. The Pennsylvania Courts have released this series of videos that explain the judiciary’s new policy for protecting confidential information and the required steps you must take to protect that information when filing documents in the courts.

Forms - Pennsylvania Courts

The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania provides forms for citizens, the judiciary and law enforcement. These bilingual forms are now offered in 13 languages. ‌BILINGUAL FORMS / FORMULARIOS BILINGÜES: ‌(ARABIC) العربية; 中文 (CHINESE-SIMPLIFIED); FRANÇAIS (FRENCH); KREYÒL AYISYEN (HAITIAN CREOLE); ITALIANO (ITALIAN); ខ្មែរ (KHMER); 한국어 (KOREAN); नेपाली (NEPALI); POLSKI (POLISH); PORTUGUÊS (PORTUGUESE); РУССКИЙ (RUSSIAN); ESPAÑOL (SPANISH); TIẾNG VIỆT (VIETNAMESE)

How to Collect Evidence of Domestic Violence: A Self-Help Guide

Evidence of abuse can help you to get a PFA or other protective order. This evidence may also be useful in other types of cases where domestic violence is relevant. This brochure offers tips on how to collect this evidence.

Philadelphia County (PFA): Information on Protection From Abuse (PFA) in Philadelphia County

Information from Women's Law Project and Philadelphia Legal Assistance on how to file a PFA Petition; How to prepare for your hearing; and What to expect in Family Court. [PDF]

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection From Abuse Forms

Forms with instructions from the Philadelphia Bar Association's Family Law Section for use in Protection From Abuse proceedings taking place in Philadelphia courts.

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection from Abuse in Philadelphia County

Information from the Family Law Section of the Philadelphia Bar Association on how to obtain a Protection from Abuse Order in Philadelphia County.

Philadelphia: Proceedings in Philadelphia Family Court during COVID-19

Information from Philadelphia Legal Assistance on how to stay informed and access the Philadelphia Family Court, including how to file pleadings and attend virtual hearings.

Westmoreland County: PFA (Protection from Abuse) and PSVI (Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation) Orders

Information about Protection From Abuse and Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation Laws and the the process for getting a protective order in Westmoreland County.

Dependable Access for Victimization Expenses (DAVE) Online Claim Filing System

This Victims Compensation Assistance Program helps victims of crime in Pennsylvania with expenses related to a crime. You may use this site to file a claim for compensation.

Forms - Pennsylvania Courts

The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania provides forms for citizens, the judiciary and law enforcement. These bilingual forms are now offered in 13 languages. ‌BILINGUAL FORMS / FORMULARIOS BILINGÜES: ‌(ARABIC) العربية; 中文 (CHINESE-SIMPLIFIED); FRANÇAIS (FRENCH); KREYÒL AYISYEN (HAITIAN CREOLE); ITALIANO (ITALIAN); ខ្មែរ (KHMER); 한국어 (KOREAN); नेपाली (NEPALI); POLSKI (POLISH); PORTUGUÊS (PORTUGUESE); РУССКИЙ (RUSSIAN); ESPAÑOL (SPANISH); TIẾNG VIỆT (VIETNAMESE)

Local Forms and Self-Help Information

For local forms and information for your county, click the title to see the SELF-HELP FORMS AND INFORMATION sub-topic. Counties are listed alphabetically after some generally applicable forms or you can set your location on the page to see only forms applicable for that location.

Protection from Abuse in Philadelphia County

Information on how to obtain a Protection from Abuse Order in Philadelphia County.

Protection From Abuse in Philadelphia - Emergency Domestic Violence Orders

Information on the Philadelphia Emergency Domestic Violence site, which is responsible for issuance of Emergency Protection from Abuse Orders. It is located at the Criminal Justice Center, Room B-03 at 1301 Filbert St, Philadelphia, PA (215-683-7280). The office is open daily after 5 p.m. (until 8 a.m. when Family Court re-opens). It is open 24 hours on weekends and holidays. [PDF]

Abuse

Information on the Pennsylvania Protection from Abuse Act from the Erie County Bar Association.

Domestic Violence and TANF Support Requirements

Information from the Family Law Section of the Philadelphia Bar Association about the requirement that families who receive cash assistance from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) apply for child or spousal support unless excused for good cause. [PDF]

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection From Abuse Forms

Forms with instructions from the Philadelphia Bar Association's Family Law Section for use in Protection From Abuse proceedings taking place in Philadelphia courts.

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection from Abuse in Philadelphia County

Information from the Family Law Section of the Philadelphia Bar Association on how to obtain a Protection from Abuse Order in Philadelphia County.

Protection from Abuse

Consumer information pamphlet from the Pennsylvania Bar Association. [PDF]

How to Obtain a Civil Protection Order (Video)

This video from the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts explains the process for obtaining a civil protection order from the courts.

Protection Orders: How to File for a Protection Order in Pennsylvania (Video)

This video from the Pennsylvania Courts provides detailed step-by-step instructions on how to file for a protection order. The video will prepare victims for what to expect when they file a protection order by offering a detailed description of each step involved in the filing process.

PA Courts Public Access Policy - Filing Requirements in the Courts (Video)

Effective on January 6, 2018, a new Public Access Policy is in effect in Pennsylvania Courts. This policy imposes requirements on anyone filing court documents in the trial and appellate courts to safeguard information in the documents they file. The Pennsylvania Courts have released this series of videos that explain the judiciary’s new policy for protecting confidential information and the required steps you must take to protect that information when filing documents in the courts.

Battered Spouse, Children & Parents - Immigrant Visa Petitions

As a battered spouse, child or parent, you may file an immigrant visa petition under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). This page provides informaton on that process.

Forms - Pennsylvania Courts

The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania provides forms for citizens, the judiciary and law enforcement. These bilingual forms are now offered in 13 languages. ‌BILINGUAL FORMS / FORMULARIOS BILINGÜES: ‌(ARABIC) العربية; 中文 (CHINESE-SIMPLIFIED); FRANÇAIS (FRENCH); KREYÒL AYISYEN (HAITIAN CREOLE); ITALIANO (ITALIAN); ខ្មែរ (KHMER); 한국어 (KOREAN); नेपाली (NEPALI); POLSKI (POLISH); PORTUGUÊS (PORTUGUESE); РУССКИЙ (RUSSIAN); ESPAÑOL (SPANISH); TIẾNG VIỆT (VIETNAMESE)

Immigration Options for Victims of Crimes

This brochure from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services provides information for Law Enforcement, Healthcare Providers, and Others about legal remedies available to victims of certain crimes. [PDF] (February 2010)

Options for Civil Protection Orders in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, there are three different civil protection order options that offer victims of certain crimes relief from further harm from their perpetrator. Learn about the different options and which one might be best for your situation. (2017)

Protection From Abuse (PDF)

This fact sheet from the Disability Rights Pennsylvania offers a brief overview of the Protection From Abuse Act.

Local Forms and Self-Help Information

For local forms and information for your county, click the title to see the SELF-HELP FORMS AND INFORMATION sub-topic. Counties are listed alphabetically after some generally applicable forms or you can set your location on the page to see only forms applicable for that location.

Lawrence County: Criminal Justice Information for Domestic Violence Survivors - Lawrence County

Information about the process in the Criminal Justice System when charges are filed related to domestic violence. Includes Important Phone Numbers for Lawrence County.

Philadelphia County: Domestic Relations Information Sheet

Form from the Philadelphia Bar Association's Family Law Section for use in domestic relations proceedings taking place in Phildelphia courts.

Philadelphia County (PFA): Information on Protection From Abuse (PFA) in Philadelphia County

Information from Women's Law Project and Philadelphia Legal Assistance on how to file a PFA Petition; How to prepare for your hearing; and What to expect in Family Court. [PDF]

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection From Abuse Forms

Forms with instructions from the Philadelphia Bar Association's Family Law Section for use in Protection From Abuse proceedings taking place in Philadelphia courts.

Philadelphia County (PFA): Protection from Abuse in Philadelphia County

Information from the Family Law Section of the Philadelphia Bar Association on how to obtain a Protection from Abuse Order in Philadelphia County.

Philadelphia: Proceedings in Philadelphia Family Court during COVID-19

Information from Philadelphia Legal Assistance on how to stay informed and access the Philadelphia Family Court, including how to file pleadings and attend virtual hearings.

Westmoreland County: PFA (Protection from Abuse) and PSVI (Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation) Orders

Information about Protection From Abuse and Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation Laws and the the process for getting a protective order in Westmoreland County.

Westmoreland County: PFA (Protection from Abuse) and PSVI (Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation) Orders

Information about Protection From Abuse and Protection of Victims of Sexual Violence or Intimidation Laws and the the process for getting a protective order in Westmoreland County.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE DOESN'T STOP FOR COVID-19! (Southeastern PA)

Information for victims of domestic violence in Bucks, Chester, Delaware & Montgomery counties on how to obtain Protection from Abuse orders (PFAs) during the COVID-10 crisis.

Philadelphia: Proceedings in Philadelphia Family Court during COVID-19

Information from Philadelphia Legal Assistance on how to stay informed and access the Philadelphia Family Court, including how to file pleadings and attend virtual hearings.

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