UPDATED: October 21, 2013
What is a Personal Protection Order (PPO)?
A Personal Protection Order ("PPO") is a Circuit Court injunctive order that protects victims of Family Violence, Dating Violence or Stalking. A PPO is filed by a Petitioner against a Respondent to stop or restrain the Respondent from:
SAFETY PLANS: If you need a PPO -- especially due to troubles in a domestic relationship -- you should also develop a personalized safety plan. This plan helps you assess many areas of your life to identify additional ways to enhance your safety at home, at work, etc. It also helps you prepare in advance for the "What if....?"s that happen when violence strikes. Review some safety plan suggestions on our Downloads page (Crime Victims > Safety).
Are there different kinds of PPOs?
Yes. There are 2 kinds of PPOs:
How is a PPO different from a "no-contact" bond condition?
A restraining order (including a PPO) is a civil action between citizens.
A "no-contact" bond condition can be imposed on a defendant during a pending criminal prosecution. It means that a defendant can not personally --- or have a third-party --- contact, call, write, etc. the victim or any other party with whom the judge orders the defendant to have "no contact". This is a common bond condition for defendants charged with violent or assaultive crimes, and protects victims if the defendant is released from jail while the charge is pending. Like all other bond conditions (e.g., appearing at future court proceedings, not violating criminal laws, not leaving the state, etc.), any violation could cause the judge to raise or revoke the bond, in which case the defendant could remain in jail until the case is finished. A judge has the discretion to issue (or not issue) any bond condition, as he sees fit. A "no-contact condition" stays in effect for the entire duration of the criminal case, or until the victim requests that it be removed or "lifted" (with the judge's approval). A "no-contact" provision can also be imposed at the sentencing as part of the conditions of probation.
What if I don't qualify for a PPO?
If you do not meet the requirements to get a PPO, you may be able to get a "peace bond" which is available at the District Court Clerk's Office. Peace bonds are often used for neighbor and non-violent family disputes that do not support the issuance of a PPO.