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You do not need an attorney to file a Preliminary Protective Order. The Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, Victim/Witness Office or the Clerk’s Office can assist you in preparing the paperwork, but cannot provide legal advice. If you would like to hire an attorney to represent you at your hearing where both parties are before the judge, you may do so.
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Yes, this is typically done by the Magistrate and is in effect for 72 hours or until the next day court is in session.
No fee is required.
The Clerk’s Office opens at 8:30 am and closes at 4:30 pm It is suggested to arrive as early in the morning as possible in order to complete the paperwork and have the petition reviewed by the judge.
You should expect to spend at least a couple of hours. Arrive as early as possible and go directly to the Clerk’s Office. At that time we can assist you by contacting the Victim/Witness Office associated with the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office.
You may go to the Magistrate’s Office and testify under oath as to why you were unable to petition for the Preliminary Protective Order and why a Protective Order is still necessary. You will be asked to fill out a written statement (affidavit). If you have any questions please call the Magistrate’s Office at 434-977-0220.
If you choose to have an attorney represent you, you may hire your own. If you cannot afford an attorney to help you, you may contact Legal Aid and ask for assistance.
If you are the victim of domestic violence, you may qualify for free legal services. For more information, contact