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Protection from Abuse
Self Help - Lehigh County Court of Common Pleas

FILING HOURS

All PFAs are processed between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. If you are seeking a Protection from Abuse Order outside of those hours, you may contact your local Magisterial District Justice or the police.

The form links below are available in PDF or Word format. There is no difference in the content of the forms, you may choose the format you prefer to work in.

State and Local Court Rules Must Be Followed.

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General Instructions To Parties With No Lawyer

There are complex rules of law that everyone who comes to court must follow. You must follow these rules even though you are not a lawyer because the rules exist to provide an orderly process to reach a fair conclusion. Click here

Protection from Abuse
Protection from Abuse Petition

A Protection from Abuse Petition is filed when a person is requesting a court order which protects victims of domestic violence from abuse, specifically physical injury or threats of physical threats.

You may file for protection in Lehigh County if you live or work here, the defendant lives, works, or can be served here, or the abuse occurred here.

A person may file a Protection From Abuse Petition against an intimate partner or family member. Here are some examples:

  1. Spouses or former spouses
  2. Current or former sexual or intimate partners
  3. Household members related by blood or marriage
  4. Persons related by blood or marriage
  5. Same sex couples
  6. Parents and children

*If the abused person is a minor, then a parent, guardian ad litem, or adult household member can file on behalf of the child.

*The PFA act does not apply to disputes between strangers, neighbors, roommates, co-workers, or classmates.

  • You must complete the following forms packet and save it to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX all the forms in the packet to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms in the packet may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Packet
    • Attach the completed forms packet and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact Plaintiff to complete the intake process.

After the intake process is complete, you will be directed to go to the courthouse to have a hearing before the motions Judge. Hearings are generally conducted at 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 3:00 p.m.

The Protection Order will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court

Indirect Criminal Complaint

An Indirect Criminal Complaint is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is alleging the Defendant has violated one or more of conditions placed on the Defendant in a Temporary or Final Protection From Abuse Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Indirect Criminal Contempt petition is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Dismissal

A Petition to Modify-Dismissal is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to withdraw their Protection from Abuse Petition and close the case.

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact you with further instructions.

PFA Petition to Modify Amendment

A Petition to Modify- Amendment is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to make changes to the provisions of their current PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Extension

A Petition to Modify- Extension is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to extend the expiration date of their Final PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

Intimidation Protection Order
Intimidation Protection Petition

An Intimidation Protection Petition is filed by an adult on behalf of a minor against an offender whose age is 18 or older.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact Plaintiff to complete the intake process.

After the intake process is complete, you will be directed to go to the courthouse to have a hearing before the motions Judge. Hearings are generally conducted at 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 3:00 p.m.

The Protection Order will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court

Indirect Criminal Complaint

An Indirect Criminal Complaint is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is alleging the Defendant has violated one or more of conditions placed on the Defendant in a Temporary or Final Protection From Abuse Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Indirect Criminal Contempt petition is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Dismissal

A Petition to Modify- Dismissal is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to withdraw their Protection from Abuse Petition and close the case.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact you with further instructions.

PFA Petition to Modify Amendment

A Petition to Modify- Amendment is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to make changes to the provisions of their current PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Extension

A Petition to Modify- Extension is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to extend the expiration date of their Final PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

Sexual Violence Protection
Sexual Violence Protection Petition

A Sexual Violence Protection Petition is filed when a person, who does not have a relationship defined by the PFA Act for a Protection from Abuse Order, is requesting a court order which protects victims of sexual violence.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact Plaintiff to complete the intake process.

After the intake process is complete, you will be directed to go to the courthouse to have a hearing before the motions Judge. Hearings are generally conducted at 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 3:00 p.m.

The Protection Order will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court

Indirect Criminal Complaint

An Indirect Criminal Complaint is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is alleging the Defendant has violated one or more of conditions placed on the Defendant in a Temporary or Final Protection From Abuse Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Indirect Criminal Contempt petition is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Dismissal

A Petition to Modify- Dismissal is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to withdraw their Protection from Abuse Petition and close the case.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Family Court staff member will contact you with further instructions.

PFA Petition to Modify Amendment

A Petition to Modify- Amendment is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to make changes to the provisions of their current PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

PFA Petition to Modify Extension

A Petition to Modify- Extension is filed when a Plaintiff in a Protection from Abuse case is requesting to extend the expiration date of their Final PFA Order.

  • You must complete ALL of the following forms in order and save each form to a location on your computer. You will need to then EMAIL or FAX your documents to the Family Court Office. Failure to complete and EMAIL or FAX ALL the forms may result in your petition not being processed.
  • Send Completed Forms
    • Attach each completed form and EMAIL them to FamilyCourtOffice@Lehighcounty.org

    • OR

    • Fax each completed form to (610) 782-3866

Once the Family Court Office has received the documents, a Rule to Show Cause will be prepared and taken to the Motions Judge during a PFA session at either 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.

Once the Rule to Show Cause is ruled on, it will be filed with the Clerk of Judicial Records Office and the Plaintiff will be notified.

If the Rule to Show Cause is signed by the Judge, both parties will be ordered to appear in court at later date determined by the Court.

The Rule to Show Cause will be emailed to Plaintiff at the email address they provide to the Court.

Disclaimer
The forms and instructions that are available from this website are not a substitute for professional legal advice. Court employees cannot give you legal advice or help you fill out /complete the forms. It is your responsibility to read and complete the forms and to take required steps to file and serve the documents. If you decide to use these forms in an actual action, be prepared to spend appropriate time gathering information, completing forms and following the Rules of Court. The Court assumes no responsibility for the use of these forms and accepts no liability for actions taken by using these documents, including reliance on the instructions and/or contents. To obtain legal advice and to insure the proper use of this material, you should contact a lawyer.

If you want to obtain the service of an attorney, but do not know whom to contact, you should visit the Lehigh Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service website.

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