Different Types of Protection Orders in Washington State
Gives a summary of the different types of protection orders to help a petitioner decide what is the appropriate protection order to request.
Domestic Violence Protection Order (DVPO)Domestic Violence Protection Orders are issued under RCW 26.50.030. A petition under this provision is appropriate when the petitioner is alleging a prior incident or incidents of domestic violence. "Domestic violence" means physical harm, bodily injury, assault or the infliction of imminent fear of physical harm, bodily injury, assault, sexual assault or stalking (as defined by RCW 9A.46.110). These acts may constitute "domestic violence" if committed by someone's intimate partner or former intimate partner, a family or household member or member of current or prior dating relationship.
Sexual Assault Protection Order (SAPO)Sexual Assault Protection Orders are issued under RCW 7.90.020. A petition under this provision is appropriate where the petitioner is alleging circumstances of non-consensual sexual conduct by the respondent that would not be addressed by a domestic violence protection order (described above). A request for a SAPO order may be filed on behalf of a minor child or vulnerable adult and a child between 16 and 18 years old may file a petition on their own.
Extreme Risk Protection OrderExtreme Risk Protection Orders are issued under RCW 7.94.040. Under this provision, if the Court finds that it is more likely than not that the respondent poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to self or others by purchasing, receiving, or possessing a firearm, the court shall enter an Extreme Risk Protection Order for one year. The Court may consider a number of factors in making its determination such as: recent acts or threats of violence (against self or others), a pattern of acts or violence in last 12 months, previous protection orders or violation of previous orders, previous convictions for domestic violence or hate crimes, previous unlawful use, display or brandishing of firearm, history of use or threat of physical force or history of stalking, prior arrest for felony offense or violent crime and evidence of history of drug or alcohol abuse, and recent acquisition of firearm.
Anti-Harassment OrderAnti-harassment Protection Orders are issued under RCW 10.14.080. The Court will grant such an order if the Court finds that it is more likely than not that the petitioner has been unlawfully harassed by the respondent. Unlawful harassment means a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person which seriously alarms, annoys, harasses or is detrimental to such person and serves no legitimate or lawful purpose. A course of conduct means a pattern of conduct comprised of a series of acts over a period of time, even if it is over a short time. Constitutionally protected conduct is not included as part of a harassing course of conduct.