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Schwartz Law Firm, LLC. – Philadelphia Divorce Lawyers
Pennsylvania has a Protection From Abuse Statute, which protects any persons in a loving relationship, married or not, heterosexual or not, from harassing, abusing, hitting, or stalking behaviors. Protection from abuse orders are often sought in divorce cases, when one of the parties accuses the other of spousal abuse or child abuse.
In order to receive protection from abuse orders, a party has to prove that he or she is in fear of imminent bodily injury, that they have been stalked or threatened, and are in fear. You can’t seek protection from a future threat: the threat must be of imminent abuse. In the appropriate case, the order can provide for immediate eviction from the home. After a hearing, the protection from abuse order can continue for a period of up to three years from the date it is entered. There is also a provision for turning over firearms.
Charges of spousal or child abuse are often made in the early stages of a domestic dispute. If your spouse has filed for a protection order or if you are in need of such an order, you and your lawyer need the vision to look down the road and analyze whether there are long-term implications to such an order. That sometimes will depend on how you litigate the spousal or child abuse matter.
Our first analysis of a protection from abuse order is whether it should be litigated or settled. Sometimes, a good way to settle protection from abuse orders is to have the accused party sign the order without admission and without prejudice. In that way, they won’t have a finding of abuse against them. They’ve simply agreed to leave the other party alone.
The accused party can also litigate the protection from abuse complaints and attempt to prevail. If our clients are adamant they did nothing wrong, we will aggressively litigate the complaint in the appropriate case.