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In a protection order hearing, if a party has a lawyer, is the lawyer required to file a notice of appearance?

Spokane, WA |

At first hearing for a domestic violence protection order, respondent showed up with an attorney that asked for continuance based on not receiving the petition with enough advance notice. He spoke for the respondent at the hearing and has since mailed out a subpoena signed as attorney for respondent. Is he also required to file his notice of appearance? Or do judges in these courts often just allow representation as such? Is there a benefit either way, or could I ask for a continuance if no notice of appearance is provided?

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Attorney answers 3


I don't see why a judge would allow a continuance, since you do know the lawyer is in the picture and therefore have notice. If you want to retain a lawyer, retain one now. If the lawyer needs more time, he will ask for a continuance at that point.

I am licensed in Pennsylvania. Members of my firm are licensed in various states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. We handle cases involving personal injury (car accidents slip and falls, etc.,) medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, workers' compensation and social security disability. This post is not legal advice, but instead contains general educational information. Please do not act or refrain from acting based upon what you read in this post. Also please remember that this post does not form an attorney/client relationship between you and me. If you have specific legal questions, you should contact an attorney in your state for assistance.


When an attorney appears on behalf of a client and is representing them in the matter, not just standing in as a courtesy or something along those lines, the attorney should file a Notice of Appearance with the court of record and serve it upon the opposing party. The attorney could also elect to serve you with his or her notice of appearance at the next hearing by handing you the document, rather than making service ahead of time. If you know the other party has an attorney, you may also be wise to obtain counsel. Furthermore, given that you know the other party has counsel and that a new date in the case has been set, simply failing to receive a notice of appearance in advance is unlikely to be a successful basis for continuance. On the other hand, you do not receive the respondent's response to your petition in advance of the hearing, you could seek a continuance on that basis asking for time to review and prepare accordingly.

This answer is my personal opinion and is offered for informational purposes only. This is not a legal opinion, legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. (206)659 -6839


What is the real issue here? Are you mad that the case was continued? Do you want to understand all the issues and have someone there to be able to explain what is happening or what a Judge did and why? This comes from hiring an attorney so that you can be ready and informed. You are asking us as attorneys to answer questions that are almost impossible to answer because we weren't there. Yes, an attorney should file an NOA informing the court and parties that he/she is the attorney representing this person. I wish you well but don't understand what you are trying to accomplish? You seek a protection order against this person and the Judge allowed a continuance. I assume that there is a temporary protection order in place right now. Good Luck to you.

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