A personal protection order (PPO) is a directive issued by a judge to stop an individual from harassing, harming, or stalking you. The PPO prohibits or restricts the other person from contacting you, following you, entering your home or office, hurting you, taking minor children from you, or purchasing or possessing a firearm. You can get a PPO if the other person’s actions put your health and safety at risk, or you have a reasonable fear that they will hurt you.
Michigan’s Two Types of PPOs
To get a domestic PPO you must show that someone with whom you have or had a relationship has threatened you, committed domestic violence, or restricted your independence or freedom. You can file for a domestic PPO against:
- Your current or former spouse
- Your current or former dating partner
- A person you had a child with
- A person you live with or have lived with
You can get a stalking PPO against a person you do not have a domestic relationship with. When you file for this type of PPO, you must show that the other person made unwanted contact with you on two or more occasions. The contact must have caused you to suffer fear or harm and can include incidents that occurred in person or electronically.
Filing for a PPO
To get either type of PPO, you must file a petition with the court. In the form, you must state what the other person (respondent) did, the dates the incidents occurred, and how you suffered as a result. Although a police report is not required, if you have one, you can include it with your petition. If you and the respondent are involved in any court cases – whether in Michigan or another state – you must also include that information.
Including a detailed account of the respondent’s behavior can help the judge decide on the type of restrictions to include in the PPO.
After you file the petition, the court will schedule a hearing where the judge will decide whether or not to grant the PPO. The respondent must receive a copy of the petition and hearing notice.
If you fear the other person might cause immediate harm, you must request an emergency – ex parte – order. In doing so, you will not have to wait for the PPO hearing. When filing for an ex parte order, the respondent will not know that you have petitioned for a PPO until after it is issued.
Serving the Responded with PPO Documents
After your PPO has been granted, you must have the PPO and petition delivered to the respondent. You do not have to do this yourself; rather, the documents can be delivered by a police department, a process server, another adult, or through registered mail with a return receipt requested.
You must then provide the court clerk with a Proof of Service form.
When a PPO Petition Cannot Be Filed
You are unable to file a petition for a PPO against your minor child, and your minor child cannot file a petition against you or their other parent.
Contact the Law Offices of Elaine Stypula for a Free Consultation
When you file a petition for a PPO, you have initiated a court process, and you must adhere to the rules of the court. Having an experienced attorney on your side can help you navigate the complexities of obtaining a PPO. Our lawyer has over 20 years of legal experience and has handled various family law cases. We will provide the attentive and compassionate guidance you need to accurately complete forms and deliver arguments in front of a judge during a hearing.
For trusted and professional representation, call us at (248) 565-3800 or contact us online.