Personal Protection Orders

 UPDATED: November 6, 2018

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Under Michigan law, Prosecuting Attorneys must assist persons filing for Personal Protection Orders, and must assist PPO plaintiffs during violation hearings, if he/she is not being represented at that hearing by a private attorney.

We hope that our PPO pages will help you better understand the process of getting, serving and enforcing a PPO.

Adrianne Van Langevelde
Adrianne Van Langevelde


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:

  • contacting the Petitioner through any means (in person, by phone, by mail or e-mail, etc.)
  • entering the Petitioner's residence property or work place
  • assaulting, attacking, beating, or wounding the Petitioner
  • harassing, stalking or threatening the Petitioner
  • removing any minor children from where they live unless their removal is part of court-ordered visitation
  • interfering with the Petitioner's efforts to remove her children or property
  • purchasing or possessing a firearm
  • interfering with or engaging in conduct that impairs Petitioner's employment or educational environment
  • allowing a non-custodial parent from having access to Petitioner's home or work address or telephone numbers through a minor child's records
  • any other specific act that interferes with the Petitioner's personal liberty or causes a reasonable fear of violence
A PPO Cannot:
  • evict a person in a landlord/tenant relationship
  • establish custody or parenting time
  • protect personal property from damage
  • mediate neighbor disputes
  • stop a person from being rude or spreading rumors
  • remove a person from a place they have a legal right to be, such as the local store

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.


Are there different kinds of PPOs?

Yes. There are 2 kinds of PPOs:

  1. Domestic Relations PPO --- if the respondent is (i) current/former spouse, (ii) current/former dating relationship, (iii) current/former resident of your household, or (iv) you have a child in common.
  2. Stalking PPO --- if you and the respondent do not have a domestic relationship, then you must establish that the respondent has been stalking you.



Stalking must involve
two or more "separate and non-continuous" acts.

A single incident made up of a series of continuous acts, each immediately following the other, is not "stalking".

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.

Writing icon

Getting Your PPO

Who can get a PPO?

  1. Anyone who has been physically, emotionally or sexually abused by a current or former spouse, a family member, a domestic partner, the other parent of your child, a current or former roommate, or a current or former person in a dating relationship. (This is called a "domestic PPO".)

  2. Anyone who has been "stalked" --- repeatedly harassed to the point of being terrorized, intimidated or threatened. (This is called a "stalking PPO".)

Can a PPO be issued for a minor?

Yes and No. A minor cannot get the PPO in his or her own name. An adult must be appointed by the court as a "Next Friend" for a minor under 17 years of age (or a legally incapacitated person). An unemancipated minor cannot get a PPO against his/her parent.

Can a PPO be issued against a minor?

Yes and No. Michigan now allows PPOs to be issued against a minor --- someone under 18 years old. [See Forms CC 375M and CC 377M.] But a parent cannot get a PPO issued against his/her own unemancipated minor child. Don't forget: many of the same "no contact" protections that you can receive through a PPO can be added as bond or probation conditions if the minor is prosecuted for assaultive, destructive, harassing or stalking behavior.

Where can I get a PPO?

A "do-it-yourself" PPO packet, containing instructions and all necessary forms, is available in the Eaton County Courthouse, 1045 Independence Blvd., Charlotte, MI 48813, at the County Clerk's Office (1st floor) and the Circuit Court Clerk's office (2nd floor). [Here are directions and maps to the Eaton County Courthouse.]

Where can I get help to fill out the PPO forms?

The Circuit Court Clerk's staff are not lawyers, and are prohibited from giving legal advice on how to fill the forms out, what to include, etc. The staff cannot assist you beyond explaining internal procedures of the court.

Some domestic violence organizations (such as Eve, Inc. (End Violent Encounters) hold clinics to assist with PPO paperwork. Contact local women's shelters in your area or local legal aid organization to see if they provide this service.

Your local Prosecuting Attorney may also be able to help review your papers, and may suggest additional information that you should include. In mid-Michigan, contact:

Help Eaton County
Who Eaton County Circuit Court SAFE Place Legal Advocacy Program 
SAFE Place PPO Unit
Where Eaton County Courthouse, 2nd Floor
1045 Independence Blvd.
Charlotte, MI 48813
Eaton County Courthouse
1045 Independence Blvd.
Charlotte, MI 48813
Phone (517) 543-7500, ext. 4335

Legal Advocate - (517) 543-4606

PPO Unit - (517) 667-0091

When Mon - Fri
08:00 am - 04:30 pm

Call for an appointment


Assists victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Barry and Eaton Counties with legal advice, and provides support through the criminal justice process. All services provided FREE, including court accompaniment, referrals to community resources, assistance with PPOs, information and assitance on child custody and divorce.

Read the Safe Place Victim Advocacy Program brochure!

** Legal advocates and PPO advocates can only offer guidance and support, but cannot provide legal advice or representation **

Help Ingham County
Who Ingham County PPO Office
(A non-profit organization that assists individuals involved in domestic violence situations)
Ingham County Sheriff
Domestic Violence Support
Where PPO Office
Grady Porter Building
313 W. Kalamazoo St., 3rd Fl
Lansing, MI 48933

630 N. Cedar St.
Mason, MI 48854

Phone (517) 483-6545 (517) 676-8285
When Mon.-Fri.: 8am-Noon & 1pm-5pm
Circuit Court Clerk
(517) 483-6500

Warren Foundation
(517) 484-5050

What forms are used?

You will use several forms, depending on what you are trying to do and your relationship with the abuser. The forms are listed below. Click on the form name to see an image of it.

NOTE #1:
The PPO forms (below) are provided only to show you what each looks like & what information you must include. Your court might not accept a print-out of the SCAO forms from this web site. If so, when you file for your PPO you may have to use the ORIGINAL forms the court clerk gives you.
(Use the Tab key to go from field-to-field.)

NOTE #2:
Some of the PPO forms available below are in PDF format. If you cannot view them, download & install the free Acrobat Reader.


Type of Form When to Use
Eaton County Circuit Court PPO Office: PPO Guide  PDF icon Read this before you fill out or file your forms.
Eaton County Circuit Court PPO Office: Petitioner's Legal Obligations  PDF icon
Eaton County Circuit Court PPO Office: Petitioner's Verified Statement  PDF icon File this completed form with your PPO Petition (see State-Wide Forms, below).
Eaton County Sheriff's Department:
information sheet
Descriptive information about the person who you want restrained, which will be included in the information entered into L.E.I.N. system.
Petition & Order to Appoint Next Friend
[Eaton County Circuit Court form]
If you need a PPO for a minor, the minor cannot file on his/her own behalf. The Court must appoint a "next friend" (who can be one of the minor's parents) to represent the minor.
Type of Form When to Use
Instructions for Personal Protection Orders PDF icon State Court Administrator's Office (SCAO) instruction booklet.
Petition for Personal Protection Order (Domestic Relationship)  (CC 375)  PDF icon If you & the person you want restrained have a 'domestic relationship' (spouse or former spouse; current or former household resident; child in common; dating relationship).
Personal Protection Order (Domestic Relationship) (CC 376)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 375 ... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" through "D").

Petition for Personal Protective Order Against a Minor (Domestic Relationship)  (CC 375M)   PDF icon

If you and the minor you want restrained have a 'domestic relationship' (current or former household resident; child in common; dating relationship).
Personal Protection Order Against a Minor (Domestic Relationship) (CC 376M)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 375M ... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" through "D").
Petition for Personal Protection Order Against Stalking (Non-Domestic Relationship)  (CC 377)  PDF icon If you want an order to restrain another person from stalking or harassing you and you do not have a domestic relationship with this person.
Personal Protection Order Against Stalking (Non-Domestic Relationship)  (CC 380)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 377 ... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" through "D").
Petition for Personal Protection Order Against Stalking by a Minor (Non-Domestic Relationship) (CC 377M)  PDF icon If you want an order to restrain a minor from stalking or harassing you and you do not have a domestic relationship to this person.
Personal Protection Order Against Stalking by a Minor (Non-Domestic Relationship) (CC 380M)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 377M ... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" through "E").

Petition for Personal Protection Order (Non-Domestic Sexual Assault) (CC 395) PDF icon


Spanish version: Peticion de Orden de Proteccion Personal (Agresion / Abuso Sexual no Domestico)


Arabic version


Use this form if you want an order to restrain a person over the age of 18 from sexually assaulting you or threatening to sexually assault you, you do not have a domestic relationship with this person, and that person has: (1) previously been convicted of a sexual assault against you, or (2) subjected you to, threatened you with, or placed you in reasonable apprehension of sexual assault, or (3) previously been convicted of furnishing you, a minor, with obscene material, or (4) if you are a minor and this person has furnished you with obscene material.

Petition for Personal Protection Order Against a Minor (Non-Domestic Sexual Assault)  (CC 395M)  PDF icon

If you want an order to restrain a person under the age of 18 from sexually assaulting you or threatening to sexually assault you, you do not have a domestic relationship with this person, and that person:

1) is subject to an order of disposition or other adjudication based on a sexual assault against you,


2) has subjected you to, threatened you with, or placed you in reasonable apprehension of sexual assault,


3) is subject to an order of disposition or other adjudication based on furnishing you, a minor, with obscene material,


4) has furnished you, a minor, with obscene material.

Personal Protective Order (Non-Domestic Sexual Assault) (CC 396) PDF icon




Spanish version: Orden de Proteccion Personal


Arabic version

Companion form to CC 395... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" and "B")

Personal Protective Order (Non-Domestic Sexual Assault)  (CC 396m) icon-acrobat

Companion form to CC 395m... becomes the actual Order signed by the Judge. You must fill out the informational boxes at the top (items "A" and "B")
Notice of Hearing on Personal Protection Order
(CC 381)  PDF icon
If you did not request an ex-parte order, or the judge refuses to issue an order without a hearing.
Order Denying or Dismissing Petition for Personal Protection Order  (CC 383)  PDF icon Order signed by the judge if your petition for PPO, or proofs in a contested hearing, do not merit issuance of a PPO.
Motion & Order to Dismiss Action for Personal Protection Order  (CC 378)  PDF icon If you do not want to continue with your Motion for a PPO and the order has not yet been signed by the Judge. (This form is rarely used.)

Motion to Modify, Extend or Terminate Personal Protection Order (CC 379)  PDF icon

Spanish version: Mocion Para Modificar, Prolongar, O Terminar Una Orden de Proteccion Personal   PDF icon

If you want to change the terms of, extend the duration of, or dismiss a PPO that has been signed by a Judge. The Respondent can use this form to try to change the terms of, or dismiss, the PPO.

Order on Motion to Extend / Terminate PPO (CC 385)  PDF icon


Spanish version: Orden Acerca de la Mocion Para Modicicar, Prolongar, o Terminar Una Orden de Proteccion Personal  PDF icon

Companion form to CC 379  and CC 379SP... filled out by the Judge when the Petitioner or Respondent changes the terms of, or dismisses, the PPO.
Motion and Order to Show Cause for Violating Personal Protection Order  (CC 382)  PDF icon Use if the Respondent (i) has been served with the PPO, (ii) has violated the PPO, (iii) has not been arrested by the police for the violation, and (iv) you want the court to order him in to court to answer to a contempt charge.
Order After Hearing on Show Cause for Violating Personal Protection Order  (CC 382A)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 382 ... filled out by the Judge after a show cause hearing claiming that the respondent violated the PPO.
Order After Hearing on Violating Personal Protection Order  (CC 384)  PDF icon Companion form to CC 382 ... filled out by the Judge after an evidentiary hearing on whether the respondent violated the PPO.
Proof of Service (CC 386)  PDF icon Use this form after the defendant has been served with a copy of the PPO.

By using the "do-it-yourself" Personal Protection Order, YOU ARE CHOOSING TO REPRESENT YOURSELF IN A LAWSUIT. You have involved the Court, so YOU MUST FOLLOW THE COURT's RULES!! If you miss a required step, or fail to properly and completely fill out required forms, the Order you get from the Court could be ineffective, and you could remain unprotected.

Can I fill out PPO forms on-line?

Call your County's Circuit Court Clerk to find out. Some courts may insist that you use their SCAO forms packets, or local forms.

Most of the forms listed above are in PDF, and have fill-in-the-blank fields. (Use the Tab key to go from field-to-field.) The forms include instruction notes on which sections you must fill out. Check-boxes can be checked and unchecked, as needed. You can save your work and reopen the form. When you are done, print it off.

Can I get a PPO right away, or do I have to wait for a hearing?

If you are in immediate danger, you may request an "ex-parte" order, which will take effect immediately without a hearing and without advanced notice to the other party. If you want an ex-parte order, you must convince the judge with specific facts contained in your motion that you are in danger of immediate and irreparable injury, harm or damage (injury that cannot be repaired by a court order after the injury happens) if the PPO is not issued. "Ex-parte" PPOs do not require a court hearing, unless the defendant requests a hearing to modify or terminate the order.

"Non-emergency" PPOs will require a hearing in front of the circuit court judge before the PPO will be issued. At this hearing, the judge will listen to testimony by witnesses regarding what has happened that necessitates a PPO.

What facts do I have to include in the papers?

The facts that you include in the PPO application are very important! Tell the Judge what your relationship is with the respondent, and what has happened recently that makes you need a PPO ... in short, tell why you need to be protected. The forms give you very little room to include facts, but you can attach additional pages. Include detailed facts to support your need for a protection order.

What information and documents should I bring when I file for the PPO?

If you can support the facts with evidence, do it! Attach:

  • information or documents that support the facts --- police reports, medical records, reports from social agencies, photographs (of injuries or property destruction), affidavits or notarized written statements from witnesses to the events you describe in your motion, etc.
  • proof of domestic relationship --- marriage license, child's birth certificate or affidavit of parentage, lease agreement, etc.
  • court documents --- complaint for divorce, annulment or separate maintenance papers, divorce decree, custody orders, lease agreement, etc.
  • descriptive information about the person to be restrained, such as name, home address, place of employment, date of birth, Social Security number, driver's license number, and physical description (hair color, eye color, height, weight, tattoos, scars, etc.).

Will the person who is being restrained see everything I file, including where I am living?

A copy of your motion and anything you attach to your request for the PPO will be given to the person you want restrained. If you do not want to include your home address or phone number in these documents, tell the Court Clerk who assists you. She can help you fill out an edited version of the documents with that personal information deleted, which will be served on the defendant. However, you still must give the court a contact address so the Court can send notices to you.

Do "domestic relationship PPOs" and "non-domestic relationship PPOs" require the same facts or information?

No. "Non-domestic" relationship PPOs require clear facts proving "stalking", before a PPO can be issued (i.e., more than one incident or threats, harassment, etc.). "Domestic" relationship PPOs can be issued after a single incident.

The Respondent is a law enforcement officer, or is licensed to carry a gun. Is he treated differently?

A law enforcement officer or person licensed to carry a gun has no special protections against a PPO petition.

NOTE: You must advise the Court if the person you are trying to restrain is a law enforcement officer or person who must carry a weapon as a condition of employment! Check the appropriate box in item #2 of either PPO Petition form (CC 375 or CC 377). As of July 1, 2000, a Respondent's employer must be notified immediately if a PPO is issued against a person who is identified in pleadings as a law enforcement officer! Also, the County concealed weapons licensing board must be notified if a PPO prohibits a Respondent from owning or purchasing firearms.

How much does a PPO cost?

There is no filing fee for PPOs. However, the cost of serving a copy of the PPO on the restrained person (which is the petitioner's responsibility) may vary depending on who does it.

What happens at the Courthouse when I file for the PPO?

  1. Pick up a copy of the PPO packet and all other forms from the Eaton County Circuit Court Clerk's office, 2nd Floor, Eaton County Courthouse, 1045 Independence Blvd., Charlotte, MI 48813. (517) 543-7500, ext. 255.

    Fill out the appropriate PPO Petition [either Form CC 375, CC 375M, CC 377, or CC 377M]. If you are alleging that the respondent is stalking you, don't forget to check the appropriate box(es).

    Re-read your forms and attachments. Are they complete? Do they fully and accurately tell the Judge what the respondent has done and why you need a PPO? If you are alleging that he is stalking you, do your facts prove the legal definition? Do the forms list all affected people who should be protected by the PPO (you, your children, your work location, etc.)?

  2. Bring these completed documents to the Eaton County Circuit Court Clerk's office. A deputy clerk will look the papers over and assign a Judge and a case number.

  3. If you are asking for an ex-parte(emergency) order, the clerk will bring the papers to the Judge's office. The Judge must personally review the papers. You may have to wait a while, depending on the Judge's court schedule that day.

  4. If the Judge signs your ex-parte order, his staff will bring the paperwork back to the Clerk's office for filing. The Clerk will give you certified copies and will send one to the police department where you live. [If the Judge refuses to sign the Order, he will state his reasons in a memo in your file.]

  5. It is now your responsibility to serve the respondent with a copy of your Complaint and Motion for a PPO, all documents supporting your request, and the Court's PPO order.



Handing a document icon

 Serving Your PPO 


How do I serve the papers?

Anyone who is over the age of 18 --- other than you --- can serve the respondent. There are 3 ways service of process can be completed:

(a) By Process Server: Hire a process server. Find them in the Yellow Pages.


Eaton County Circuit Court Process Servers

Patrick Dotson
Eaton County Civil Divsion
PO Box 296
Charlotte, MI 48813-0296
(517) 543-7814
(517) 543-2936 (fax)

Kyle Ramsey-Randall 
533 S. Grand Ave., Suite 2
Lansing, MI 48933
(517) 974-7470 
(517) 482-8253 (fax)

Jeff Kirkpatrick 
Eaton County Sheriff - Civil Division
Post Office Box 296
Charlotte, MI 48813-0296
(877) 200-1659
(517) 783-5884 (fax)
Service limited to seizure orders and claim & deliveries

Rick E. Risk
County Civil Process & Judgment Enforcement
P.O. Box 517
Lake Odessa, MI. 48849-0517
(616) 374 7170
(616) 374 9012 (fax)

(b) By Personal Service: have a friend or relative over the age of 18, who has no involvement in the PPO request, personally hand the PPO paperwork to the person being restrained; or

(c) By Mail: serve the person being restrained by registered mail (return receipt requested) with delivery restricted to him/her. The registered mail package should include a copy of the notice of hearing (if it is for a Hearing Motion), a copy of the entire packet you filled out and filed with the clerk as the PPO, and a copy of the order.


Can the Respondent be given oral notice of the PPO?

As of July 1, 2000, a law enforcement officer or clerk of the court who has knowledge of the existence of a PPO may serve the PPO on the Respondent or give oral notice of the existence of the PPO. After doing so, he/she must file a proof of service or proof of oral notice with the court.


What happens after the person being restrained is served with the PPO?

Once the respondent is served, you must file separate "proofs of service" that your agent has handed both the Petition for PPO (either Form CC 375, CC 375M, CC 377, or CC 377M) and the Court's PPO Order (either Form CC 376, CC 380, or CC 380M) to the respondent. The proof of service forms for each are virtually the same, and are located on the back sides of the Petition and PPO forms. The proof of service requires information on the date, time and place where service occurred. File the completed forms with the Circuit Court Clerk.


When does the PPO go into effect?

The order goes into effect as soon as the judge signs it. The PPO can be enforced immediately. However, if the Respondent has not yet been served with a copy of the PPO, he will be orally informed of the terms of the order by the responding police officer and given an opportunity to comply with the order.


How does the PPO get entered into LEIN?

The County Clerk's office is responsible for providing a copy of the order to the local police agency so that it can immediately be entered into the Law Enforcement Information Network (L.E.I.N.).


Gavel icon

PPO Violations


What if the Respondent violates the PPO?

If your situation is an emergency, CALL 9-1-1 !  Otherwise, call the nearest police department:

Bellevue Police Department (269) 763-9429
Charlotte Police Department (517) 543-1552
Eaton County Sheriff's Department (517) 543-3512
(517) 323-8480
Eaton Rapids Police Department
(517) 663-8118
Grand Ledge Police Department (517) 627-2115
Lansing Police Department (517) 483-4600
Michigan State Police Post 11 (517) 322-1907
Olivet Police Department (269) 749-9961
Potterville Police Department (517) 645-7641

Does the violation have to occur in front of a law enforcement officer?

No. A police office may make a warrantless arrest of a PPO respondent if the officer has "reasonable cause" to believe that he violated the PPO.

A Police Officer can then quickly confirm the terms of your Order when investigating your report that the Respondent has committed a violation.

What if the PPO violator has left the scene before the police arrive?

The PPO statute does not impose a time limit on the police officer's arrest authority, so a warrantless arrest may happen even if the respondent has left the scene of an alleged violation. If the police cannot find the respondent, they may choose to file a warrant request for Stalking; repeated violations of a PPO may constitute the crime of Aggravated Stalking.

What happens if he is arrested?

The police may arrest the restrained party if he was previously served with a copy of the PPO. The police are encouraged to arrest if they have evidence of a PPO violation, but they have discretion to arrest or not arrest. If arrested, the restrained party will be brought to a Circuit Court judge within 24 hours. At that time, the Judge can set a bond; if the respondent posts the bond, he can be released. The Judge will also set a date for a Show Cause hearing where you and other necessary witnesses will testify about the how the Respondent violated the PPO. The Eaton County Prosecutor's Office may be involved in this Show Cause hearing (see below).

What if he is not arrested for violating the PPO?

The police might not arrest the restrained party, especially if the officer did not witness him commit the acts violating the PPO, or if there was insufficient proof that the respondent had been served with the PPO papers before the alleged violation occurred.

If the restrained person is not arrested, you will have to file a "motion to show cause" in the Circuit Court Clerk's office to have a hearing about the PPO violation. A "show cause" action focuses on whether the respondent should be held in contempt of court for violating the PPO. Like the original PPO application, you will have to write out what the respondent did & said, and attach supporting witness statements, police reports, photographs, etc. Your motion to show cause will be reviewed by the Judge. If he believes that a violation likely occurred, he will schedule a show cause hearing and will issue a show cause order directing the defendant to appear in Court to respond to your allegations that he violated the PPO. You must attend the show cause hearing; bring eye witnesses and supporting evidence, because testimony will be needed if the respondent disputes what you alleged in your motion.

To help you document PPO violations, download our Stalking Victim's Log!

What is the Prosecuting Attorney's role in PPO contempt hearings?

The Prosecuting Attorney must prosecute all arrest and non-arrest criminal contempt proceedings, unless the petitioner retains his or her own attorney for this purpose.

What kinds of punishment can he get for violating the PPO?

A PPO is a court order, so any violation proven beyond a reasonable doubt is criminal "contempt of court". The Judge can send the violating respondent to jail for up to 93 days for each violation, and/or impose a fine of $500, and (as of July 1, 2000) can place the Respondent on probation up to 2 years in lieu of jail time.

What can I do to help "make a case" for a PPO violation?

PPO violations happen in seclusion and public, at night and in broad daylight. Many times, police are not present when the violations occur. The constant is you. Therefore, your help is necessary in order to prove that a violation occurred.

Preserve all available tangible evidence of the PPO violation, such as notes or letters, answering machine messages, etc. Keep written notes of when and where the violations happened, what was said and done, who else may have seen or heard the respondent's conduct, etc. Take photographs of property damage. Give all of these to the police or Prosecutor.

To help you document PPO violations, download ourStalking Victim's Log! 

Can a respondent be charged with both a PPO violation and a separate criminal offense for the same behavior?

Yes. Michigan statutes clearly state a Legislative intent that criminal sanctions be imposed in addition to whatever criminal penalties apply for a separate criminal offense. [See MCL 600.2950(23) and 600.2950a(20).] Also, appellate decisions have stated that separate convictions did not violate double jeopardy, even though they were based on the same conduct. See People v Coones, 216 Mich App 721, 500 NW2d 600, 603 (1996).


What if I resume contact with the respondent after the PPO has been issued?

The PPO is directed to the respondent's behavior, NOT the petitioner's. Regardless of the petitioner's wishes for contact, the respondent will have violated the court's order. The petitioner's invitation or consent may mitigate sanctions, but it is no defense to the violation.

A petitioner should not "send the wrong signals" to the respondent by actually or seemingly allowing contact that violates the PPO. The PPO means what the order says and applies when the order says ... not just when it is "convenient" to the petitioner for the terms to apply. If you do not want or need the PPO in effect any more, move to set it aside or modify it.


How do I change the terms of the PPO?
How do I dismiss the PPO?

Only a court can change a PPO; the parties cannot do this privately or informally. If you decide to get back together (reconcile) with the person you had restrained, or you no longer want the order to remain in effect, either you or the respondent must file a motion in court to "dissolve" the order. Otherwise, the order will remain in effect until the date the judge originally set for it to expire. A form to modify (change the terms of) or dissolve (dismiss) a PPO the PPO is available in the County Clerk's Office. The same form is used to change any of the terms of the order (i.e., your new home/work address).

The respondent may move to modify or rescind the PPO within 14 days after service or actual notice, or for good cause shown after the 14 days have elapsed. A hearing must be held within 14 days after a request for modification or rescission.

A motion is also necessary to obtain a PPO which is effective longer than the time allowed in the ex-parte order.


Is there a fee to modify or cancel a PPO?

There is no filing fee when parties seek to modify or terminate a PPO.




Out-of-State PPOs

Can I get my Michigan PPO enforced in another state?

Yes. If you have a valid Michigan PPO that meets federal standards, it can be enforced in another state. The Violence Against Women Act, which is a federal law, states that all valid PPOs granted in the United States receive "full faith and credit" in all state and tribal courts within the US, including US territories.

Each state must enforce out-of-state PPOs in the same way it enforces its own orders. Meaning, if your abuser violates your out-of-state PPO, s/he will be punished according to the laws of whatever state you are in when the order is violated. This is what is meant by "full faith and credit." To make this even clearer, every Michigan PPO says that the order is enforceable in any state as long as the defendant has been notified of the order. MCL 600.2950(11)(b).

A PPO is valid anywhere in the USA if:

  • It was issued to prevent violent, threatening, or harassing behavior against another person, OR it was issued to forbid contact or communication with another person
  • The court that issued the order had jurisdiction over the people and case (i.e., had the authority to hear the case)
  • The abuser received notice of the order and had an opportunity to go to court to tell his/her side of the story. For ex parte and emergency orders, the abuser must receive notice and have an opportunity to go to court to tell his/her side of the story at a hearing that is scheduled before the temporary order expires. 18 USC 2265.


I have a temporary / e-parte PPO. Can it be enforced in another state?

Yes. Temporary ex-parte orders can be enforced by other states, just like any regular PPO, as long as the abuser has been served and will have the opportunity to have a court hearing set before your temporary order expires.

The state where you are going cannot extend your temporary order, or issue you a permanent order when the temporary one expires. If you need to extend your temporary order, you will have to contact the state that issued the order and arrange to be at the hearing in person or by telephone (if that is an option offered by the court).


What if the PPO was issued in another state?

As of 04/01/2002, a peace officer, without a warrant, may arrest and take into custody a person when the officer has positive information that a "foreign protection order" has been violated in Michigan. An officer may rely on a copy of the order if it contains all of the following: (i) parties' names, (ii) issuance date that is prior to the date when enforcement is sought, (iii) terms and conditions against the respondent, (iv) name of issuing court, (v) judicial officer's signature, and (vi) no obvious indication that the order is invalid (such as an expiration date occurring before the date when enforcement is sought). Verification on L.E.I.N. or the NCIC national protection order file is not required. The officer may rely on the petitioner's or respondent's statement that the respondent has received prior notice of the order.

A person who violates a foreign protection order that is a conditional release order or a probation order issued by another court in a criminal proceeding is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 93 days &/or $500. [See 2001 PA 197; MCL 600.2950m.]


How do I get my PPO enforced in another state?

Federal law does not require you to take any special steps to get your PPO enforced in another state. But, many states have laws or regulations about enforcement of out-of-state orders. These rules differ from state to state, so it is important to find out what the rules are in the other state before you try to get your PPO enforced there. For example, a state may ask you to "register" or file your order so that the court and the police know about it.

Although knowing the state rules can make enforcement easier, a valid PPO is enforceable regardless of whether it has been registered or filed in the new state.

Note: It is important to keep a copy of your PPO with you at all times. It is also a good idea to know the rules of states you will be living in or visiting to ensure that your out-of-state order can be enforced in a timely manner.


Do I need anything special to get my PPO enforced in another state?

In some states, you will need a certified copy of your PPO. A certified copy says that it is a "true and correct" copy; it is signed and initialed by the clerk of court that gave you the order, and usually has some kind of court stamp on it or embossed (raised) seal.

In Michigan, a certified order has a court seal on it and either the judge’s original signature or a stamp of the judge’s signature along with a “true copy” stamp. When the PPO was issued, you should have received two (2) certified copies of the order. MCL 600.2950(15)(b). If your copy is not a certified copy, go back to the court that gave you the order and ask the clerk's office for a certified copy. There is usually no fee to get a certified copy of a Michigan PPO, but you may have to pay for the copies.

Note: It is a good idea to keep a copy of the order with you at all times. You will also want to bring several copies of the order with you when you move. Leave copies of the order at your work place, at your home, at the children's school or daycare, in your car, with a sympathetic neighbor, etc. Give a copy to the security guard or person at the front desk where you live and/or work. Give a copy of the order to anyone who is named in and protected by the order.


What are the advantages and disadvantages of registering my out-of-state PPO?

Advantages: If your PPO is registered in the new state, it is easier for law enforcement officials to verify that your order is valid. When police officers arrive on a scene, they generally check to see if your PPO is registered in the state's registry. If it is not listed in the state registry, the police officer will have to look through the national registry or call the court where the order was issued. This takes longer and it could mean that your PPO is not enforced right away.

Disadvantages: When you register your PPO in a new state, some states (not all) will notify your abuser that the PPO has been registered in the new state. If you do not want your abuser to find out what state you have relocated to, it is important to understand what the rules are in your new state.


Do I need a lawyer to help enforce a PPO in another state?

You do not need a lawyer to get your PPO enforced in another state.

However, you may want to get help from a local domestic violence advocate or attorney in the state that you move to. A domestic violence advocate can let you know what the advantages and disadvantages are for registering your PPO, and help you through the process if you decide to do so.

You may also want to check with the prosecutor in the county where you are to see if that office can help. PPO violation hearings can turn into "mini trials" with witnesses, testimony, exhibits, etc. The local prosecutor may be required by state law to help put your evidence before the court.


Do I need to tell the court in Michigan if I move?

You are not required to tell the court in Michigan if you move. However, it might be a good idea to give the court a current address so that you can be notified of any actions that are taken regarding your PPO. Ask the court to keep your contact information confidential if you do not want the defendant or others to find you by looking in the court file.



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