Fifth Judicial District of Pennsylvania
County of Allegheny
Fifth Judicial District of Pennsylvania





If you need assistance or immediate safe shelter, click HERE.




Submit your information for your petition for emergency protection by clicking on the link below,
OR report to a Court facility to complete your petition.




WHO CAN FILE A PFA?

  • Current or former sexual or intimate partner (includes spouses, former spouses, dating relationships)
  • Family member related by blood or marriage (includes parents, children, siblings, etc.)

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN EMERGENCY, PRELIMINARY, TEMPORARY AND FINAL PFA?

Emergency Protection from Abuse
  • PFA matters are managed by the Family Law Center, PFA Department. However, if you are in immediate danger and the Family Law Center, PFA Department is closed, you may request emergency protection at a Magisterial District Court or Pittsburgh Municipal Court. Emergency PFA Orders are issued by Magisterial District Judges and provide protection until close of business on the day the Family Law Center, PFA Department re-opens (Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM).
  • Submit your information for your emergency petition online using the link above before proceeding to Court. Upon your arrival at a Magisterial District Court (Monday through Friday, from 11:00 AM to 3:30 PM) or Pittsburgh Municipal Court (any time, day or night, except Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM through 11:00 AM), the information submitted online will be printed onto a petition and provided to you for review. If you are unable to submit your information online, you may complete your petition at your local Magisterial District Court or Pittsburgh Municipal Court.
  • After you review and sign your paperwork, a judge at the Magisterial District Court or Pittsburgh Municipal Court will hear your case to determine whether your request will be granted or denied.

Preliminary Protection from Abuse (also known as Temporary PFAs)
  • Petitions for preliminary protection from abuse must be completed at the Court of Common Pleas Family Law Center, PFA Department, 440 Ross Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 (Monday through Friday, from 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM). You are encouraged to arrive as early as possible to complete your paperwork. Preliminary PFA Orders, if granted, remain in effect until the date of the Final Hearing (approximately 10 days).
  • A judge will hear your case the same date you complete your petition to determine whether your request will be granted or denied.

Final Protection from Abuse
  • A Final PFA Order can be issued for different time lengths, up to a maximum time length of three (3) years.

WHAT TYPES OF ABUSE ARE COVERED?
  • Causing or attempting to cause bodily injury or sexual assault
  • Placing another in reasonable fear of imminent serious bodily injury
  • Infliction of false imprisonment
  • Physical or sexual abuse of minor children
  • A course of conduct or repeated acts that place another person in reasonable fear of bodily injury

There are NO fees or costs assessed to Plaintiffs who file a protection from abuse action.

Foreign language interpreters are provided free of charge for persons with limited English proficiency. Interpreters are also provided at no cost for deaf/hard of hearing persons. To request interpreter or disability accommodations, you may click HERE or call 412-350-5419 or 412-350-4044.