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Protective Orders Attorneys Serving Allison Park, Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, protective orders are legal remedies designed to safeguard individuals from abuse and harassment. These orders, often referred to as Protection from Abuse (PFA) orders, aim to prevent further harm to those enduring domestic violence or any form of abuse.  

At Iwanyshyn & Associates, we are committed to guiding you through the process of obtaining a protective order and prioritizing your safety and well-being. Our team, led by Deborah Iwanyshyn and Daniel Hargreaves, is dedicated to assisting individuals facing threats or violence by offering reliable and compassionate legal guidance and representation. 

Types of Protective Orders

If you or your children are being abused, harassed, or abuse has been threatened, Pennsylvania offers different types of PFAs to address varying levels of urgency and need: 

  • Emergency PFA: Effective until the next business day. 

  • Ex Parte temporary PFA: Granted if the court deems that you and/or your children are in immediate danger. This order lasts until a final PFA is issued. 

  • Final PFA: Typically lasts for up to three years and may be extended under specific conditions. 

What Constitutes Abuse?

Abuse can manifest in various forms, including physical violence, emotional abuse, sexual assault, destruction of property, threats, seclusion, or the mistreatment of pets. According to Pennsylvania law, abuse includes: 

  • Inflicting or attempting to inflict bodily harm, serious injuries, rape, or sexual assault, with or without a weapon. 

  • Creating a reasonable fear of imminent serious bodily injury. 

  • Engaging in false imprisonment. 

  • Abusing minor children physically or sexually. 

  • Conducting a pattern of behavior or repeated actions that instill fear of bodily injury without legitimate reason. 

What a Protective Order Can Do

For those facing abuse, harassment, or threats of violence, a PFA can impose several restrictions and requirements on the abuser, including: 

  • Prohibiting abuse, harassment, stalking, or threats against you or your children. 

  • Removing the abuser from your shared residence. 

  • Mandating financial support for you and your children, covering expenses such as medical bills, health insurance, and living costs. 

  • Enforcing no-contact rules, including staying away from your place of employment and your children’s school. 

  • Requiring the surrender of firearms and other weapons to law enforcement. 

  • Compensating you for losses related to the abuse, including medical expenses, relocation costs, legal fees, and lost wages. 

  • Awarding temporary custody or visitation rights of minor children. 

Obtaining a Protective Order in Pennsylvania

To obtain a protective order, you will need to file a petition, attend a hearing, and await the court’s decision. While the legal process aims to provide protection and support to victims of abuse, hiring knowledgeable legal representation strengthens your case, ensuring that your voice is heard and your safety is prioritized when seeking a protective order.  

If the court grants the protective order, it will specify the terms and conditions that the respondent must follow. Violating these terms can result in legal consequences for the respondent, including fines or imprisonment. 

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Steps to Take When Seeking a Protective Order

If you are experiencing abuse, take immediate action to protect yourself and your loved ones. Always prioritize your safety and seek legal protection as you follow these steps to obtain a PFA.  

  • Call law enforcement: Report the abuse to the police. 

  • Find safety: Go to a secure location such as a law enforcement office, a friend or relative’s home, or a hotel. Do everything you can to prevent your abuser from knowing your whereabouts. 

  • Obtain an emergency protective order: Law enforcement can assist you in obtaining an emergency protective order from a magistrate.  

  • Seek legal representation: Hire an experienced family law attorney. For those in Pennsylvania, we at Iwanyshyn & Associates are ready to fight for your safety and help guide you through the legal process of obtaining a PFA.  

  • Inform your employer: If you need to take a leave of absence or if you think your abuser may show up to your workplace looking for you, be sure to notify your employer about the situation. 

  • File for a PFA order: Protect yourself and your children by filing for a PFA order against the abuser. 

The Need for Legal Support When Fighting for Your Safety

Filing for a protective order is critical for anyone facing threats, harassment, or abuse. While the legal process can be overwhelming, having professional legal support can help you fully protect your rights and safety.  

With legal support, you are more likely to secure a protective order quickly and efficiently, reducing the risk of further harm and providing peace of mind. Additionally, a skilled family law can offer ongoing advice and assistance, helping you handle any violations of the protective order and advising on further legal steps if necessary. 

Frequently Asked Questions about Protective Orders

How are protective orders enforced?

In Pennsylvania, protective orders are enforced by law enforcement agencies. When a court issues a protective order, it is entered into the Pennsylvania State Police Registry of Protection Orders, making it accessible to all law enforcement officers. If the respondent (the person whom the order is against) violates any terms of the order, immediate action can be taken, which may include arrest and criminal charges. 

Can I move to another state and maintain my protective order?

Yes, under the Full Faith and Credit provision of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a protective order issued in Pennsylvania remains valid and enforceable even if you move to another state. It’s important to provide a copy of your protective order to local law enforcement in your new state to ensure they are aware of its existence and can enforce it if necessary. 

What can I do if I am falsely accused of abuse and served with a protective order?

If you believe you have been falsely accused of abuse and served with a protective order, take immediate action to protect your rights. You should: 

  1. Attend all court hearings: Being present at court hearings allows you to present your side of the story. 

  1. Gather evidence: Collect any evidence that can refute the allegations, such as communication records, witness statements, or alibis. 

  1. Consult an attorney: Seek legal advice from an attorney experienced in handling protective order cases to help you build a strong defense. 

Navigating protective orders requires knowledgeable legal guidance. At Iwanyshyn & Associates, we have extensive experience in handling protective order cases and prioritizing our clients' safety and well-being throughout the process. 

Allison Park Protective Order Attorneys

At Iwanyshyn & Associates, we are dedicated to assisting victims of abuse in finding safety and security. Whether you reside in Allison Park, Pittsburgh, Wexford, Beaver, Gibsonia, or the surrounding areas, you can trust Iwanyshyn & Associates to advocate fiercely on your behalf. Reach out to us today for guidance and support in securing the protection you deserve.