Protection from Abuse Orders (PFA) are a variant of the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO). The Protection from Abuse Order is distinct in that it applies to a particular type of relationship such as husband/wife, parent/child, boyfriend/girlfriend, sibling/sibling or any other type intimate familial relationship. The PFA is an incredibly powerful tool and for that reason is all too often abused. You almost always see it in the bitterly contested divorce cases especially when children are involved. The disturbing thing about a PFA is that it can be issued against a party temporarily without a hearing. Protection from Abuse Orders, when they do get scheduled in the court for a Hearing, are held in the Circuit Civil Court. Having a Protection from Abuse Order issued against you does NOT mean that you have committed a crime. A Protection from Abuse Order is issued by the Court as a means to order someone to act (or NOT to act) in a certain way. Generally, you will see a PFA used in conjunction with a Domestic Violence (DV) case which IS a criminal charge. Having these types of cases adds expense and complication due to the fact that they are each held in separate courts, not to mention, every jurisdiction handle these cases differently. If you find yourself in need of help in dealing with is type of case, contact The Nelson Law Firm at 205-994-3183 for a free initial consultation.