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PFA

Protection from Abuse Order (PFA)

What is a Protection from Abuse Order (PFA) ?

Physical and sexual abuse or the threat of either is against the law. Even if you choose not to bring criminal charges against your abuser, you and your children can still get protection through the court system. This civil law is called the "Protection From Abuse Act" (PFA).

You must have one of the following relationships with the abuser:

Related by blood or marriage or have/had an intimate, romantic, or sexual relationship with the abuser.

Emergency Protection From Abuse

What is an Emergency Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order? 

An Emergency Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order can be requested if you miss the cut off time for filing at your county court house.

Please contact your local Magisterial District Judge. After business hours and on the weekends, your police department will connect you with the “on duty” Magisterial District Judge.

Find your local MDJ here: https://www.lccpa.org/mdjinfo/mdjlookup

If you are granted an Emergency PFA, your order will expire the next business day. If you want continuing protection, you must go to the courthouse the next business day and file for a temporary order.

 

Filing in Lehigh County

How to File

Due to COVID-19, Lehigh county encourages anyone needing to file a PFA, modification of a PFA, PFA Dismissal, or an Indirect Criminal Contempt (violation) of a PFA to file online at:

https://www.lccpa.org/Covid19

To file a Protection Form Abuse Petition, go to Protection From Abuse Office Section, located on the provided webpage and follow the instructions.

All paperwork needs to be completed, submitted, and approved by the office BEFORE 2:30pm to secure a hearing with the judge.

It is very difficult to complete paperwork on a cell phone. Please use a tablet or a computer. If you do not have access to a computer, tablet, phone number, or you think you will need assistance, you may fill out the forms on a kiosk in the Family Court Office Waiting Room located on the 4th Floor.

 

What's Next?

Once paperwork is submitted, the Family Court Office will call you with a time to physically come into court for your hearing. You will need access to a working phone number so the Family Court Office can call you. The Sheriff’s office will serve the other party the paperwork and hearing notice after the temporary PFA hearing.

For the final hearing, all physical evidence such as texts or pictures must be printed out and brought with you prior to the hearing.

No cell phones are allowed in court unless for audio or video evidence.

Filing in Northampton County

How to File

To file a Protection Form Abuse Petition, you will need to arrive at the PFA office on the Lower Level of the court house BEFORE 2:00pm.

 

What's Next?

Once your paperwork is submitted you will be brought before a judge for a brief hearing. The Sheriff’s office will serve the other party the paperwork and hearing notice after the temporary PFA hearing.

For the final hearing, all physical evidence such as texts or pictures must be printed out and brought with you to the hearing.

No cell phones are allowed in court unless for audio or video evidence.

Do you need help? Call our 24 hour Helpline: 1-610-437-3369

444 E. Susquehanna St.
Allentown, PA 18103
(610) 797-0530

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