We at Marinaro Law know that divorce in Pennsylvania is never easy, but if you receive abusive treatment from a spouse whom you are trying to divorce, whether it has been going on for a while or your intention to divorce was the inciting factor, it can make the divorce even more complicated. Right now, your safety is more important than all other considerations. If you have reason to fear violence from your spouse, you can obtain an order of protection from abuse against him or her.
A PFA is different from a Final Protection Order. Before you can obtain an FPO, the court must hear your spouse’s side of the story. A PFA is a temporary restraining order implemented when there is a threat of imminent harm, and you can obtain one without the cooperation of your spouse. Once a PFA is in place, it orders your spouse to stop abusing you and forces him or her to move out of your shared home. It also prevents your spouse from possessing firearms and orders him or her not to contact you in any way. Once the PFA is in place to protect you from further abuse, you can proceed with your divorce.
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, anyone can be the victim of abuse regardless of gender, age, economic status or any other factors. Therefore, if you are a man who has received abusive treatment from your wife, or if you were in an abusive same-sex relationship, you still have the right to seek a PFA. More information about divorcing an abusive spouse is available on our website.