A Protection From Abuse Order (PFA) is a court order issued by a judge that can provide you protective "relief" from someone who is abusing you, for up to three years. An individual who is 18 years of age or more, or teens and children who are accompanied by a parent, an adult household member, or a guardian ad litem, can go to court and ask for a PFA. A PFA can make it illegal for the abuser to contact you or your children.
You may also be able to get assistance with filing a PFA, counseling, legal, medical, or financial assistance, or safety planning, from an advocate in a domestic violence program in your county. All services are confidential. If you want to contact a domestic violence program in your county, you may click on victim service programs. This will enable you to locate a domestic violence program in your county and see a list of the services provided.
If you are in an abusive relationship, you may want to talk to an advocate at a domestic violence program. The advocate will be able to talk to you about your options.
A Sexual Violence Protection Order (SVPO) is designed to protect victims of sexual violence from further abuse and/or intimidation by their abuser, regardless of whether or not criminal charges have been filed against the perpetrator. Similar in many ways to a PFA, the key difference lies in the relationship between the abuser and the victim. While PFAs require an intimate or household relationship between two parties, a SVPO does not and is available to victims of sexual violence who are at continued risk of harm from their perpetrator.
You may be able to get assistance with filing a SVPO, counseling, legal, medical, or financial assistance or safety planning from an advocate in a rape crisis program in your county. All services are confidential. If you want to contact a rape crisis program in your county, you may click on victim service programs. This will enable you to locate a rape crisis program in your county and see a list of the services provided.
A Protection From Intimidation Order (PFI) is appropriate in cases of harassment and stalking
where the victim and the perpetrator do not have and have never had a family,
household, or intimate partner relationship AND the victim is under the age of
18 AND the defendant is over the age of 18. PFIs cannot be granted in cases
involving two minors, two adults, or where a minor is harassing or stalking an
adult. PFIs must be filed by an adult (parent, guardian, or adult household
member) on behalf of the minor victim.