An Order of Protection is often sought as a means to stop and protect victims from physical and emotional abuse. In Pennsylvania, an Order of Protection may be sought by both spouse and child of the offender. In some cases, an Order of Protection may be dropped by the victim due to circumstances such as reconciliation or relocation. Although dropping a protection order is not advisable under most circumstances, working with your Pennsylvania court system can make it happen as desired.
Submit a petition to drop the Order of Protection to your Pennsylvania county clerk of court. The petition will be entered into your original file and forwarded to the judge handling your case. In the petition, outline good cause why the order should be dropped.
Consult a family law attorney to help you obtain any counseling or legal help you may need. Family law attorneys are trained to help you understand Pennsylvania law concerning domestic abuse and dropping an existing protection order.
Serve the defendant with a copy of your petition and dates of any court hearings to determine if you have good cause. The state of Pennsylvania requires that all parties in the case be notified of any changes to the case via due process server or sheriff's deputy.
Attend any scheduled hearings. Most of the time, judges will meet with you and the defendant behind closed doors when you wish to drop a protection order. If there are life-threatening circumstances that the judge is worried about, you may be required to have an open court hearing with witnesses for both sides present.
File all of your court paperwork in a safe place. You will receive a copy of the final verdict. If you are granted your request, you cannot have the defendant arrested for any injury under the protection order laws. You will be required to file for a new order.
If children are involved, you may be visited by social services or other government agency to determine the welfare of your children. Dropping a protection order not only puts you at risk, but also your children and other family members.