A court can issue a PFA order if the Plaintiff was a victim of actual physical violence, or if the Defendant attempted to cause bodily injury, or if the Plaintiff was put in reasonable fear of imminent bodily injury by the Defendant ( See 23 Pa.C.S. 6102).
A Protection From Abuse Petition can be filed against the Plaintiff's spouse, a current or former intimate partner, or any family or household member. The Plaintiff may file a PFA petition for his/herself, or on behalf of another family member, including minor children.
Usually a court will issue a Temporary PFA Order, which will last until a hearing can be held. After the hearing, the court may issue a Final PFA Order, which will be in effect for up to three years.
In addition to prohibiting contact, a Protection From Abuse order can also include one or more of the following provisions:
Child support Child custody Domestic violence and child custody Temporary child custody Domestic violence and criminal charges Criminal charges for harassment Restraining order and criminal defense Child support and custody Family law Child abuse Domestic violence and family law