Copyright © 2016 Fixty Sixth Judicial District of Pennsylvania. All rights reserved.
PROTECTION FROM ABUSE
If you are a victim of domestic
violence or abuse, you can get protection from the Court under the PROTECTION
FROM ABUSE (PFA) ACT.
WHAT IS ABUSE?
A person commits "abuse"
by doing any of the following:
- Causing or attempting to cause bodily injury or sexual assault, or
- Placing another person
in fear of imminent serious bodily injury, or
- Subjecting another
person to false imprisonment, or
- Engaging in a course
of conduct or repeatedly committing acts against another person,
including following that person without proper authority, under
circumstance which place the person in reasonable fear of bodily injury,
- Physically or sexually abusing minor
WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR
The law applies to acts between:
- Family or household
- Sexual or intimate
- Persons who share
WHERE DO I FILE?
A. [When the Carbon County Courthouse is open: (8:30-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday excluding holidays), Go to the
Prothonotary's Office on the lst Floor of the Carbon County Courthouse, 4
Broadway, Jim Thorpe, PA.
- You will be given a
petition packet to complete. This packet is also available to you through the Forms Download link here:
PFA packet download. If you want to save time, you can print this form out on your printer and fill in the required information at home before you
come to the Court House to file your petition. Please do not make any changes
to the text of the form.
- After you fill in the
forms, the Prothonotary's Office staff will take you to see a Judge, if one is immediately available.
- The Judge will talk to
you; and, if the Judge believes that abuse has occurred, he will grant you
a Temporary Protection From Abuse Order and schedule a hearing. This
Temporary Order will stay in effect until the Court has the final hearing.
- After the Judge signs
the Temporary Order, you will return to the Prothonotary's Office where copies will be
- You must take one copy
of the Petition and Order to the Sheriff's Office, who will serve the
Defendant. You should keep a copy of the Order with you at all times.
- At the final hearing,
the Judge will decide if the abuse is proven; and if proven, he will grant a
Final Order for a period of up to three years. If the Judge determines that
there is no basis for the Protection Order, the Judge will dismiss the
B. [When the Carbon County Courthouse is closed: WEEKENDS, HOLIDAYS after 4:30 p.m., before 8:30 a.m.]
- Call your local police department (or State Police, if you have no local police department where you live) and inform them that you want to file a Protection From Abuse petition. The police will help you contact the Magesterial District Judge.
- If the Magisterial District Judge believes that abuse has occurred, he or she will grant you an Emergency Protection From Abuse Order.
- If you want this Order to continue, you must go to the Prothonotary's Office by the end of the next normal business day and complete steps 2 through 7 listed in Section A above.
VIOLATIONS OF ANY PROTECTION ORDER SHOULD BE PROMPTLY REPORTED TO LOCAL LAW
can call a private attorney or call the following office to see if you qualify
for low cost counsel: North Penn Legal Services, 101 West Broad Street,
Hazleton, PA 18201 (610) 377-5400. If you are in need of a safe place, call
the Domestic Violence Service Center at 1-800-424-5600. If you do not have a lawyer, you may go
directly to the Prothonotary's Office in the Courthouse during normal business
hours of 8:30 A.M. to 3:00 P.M., Monday through Friday. During evenings, weekends,
and holidays, you can contact your local police department (or the Pennsylvania
State Police) to arrange to see a Magesterial District Judge.
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