What should I do when I leave the courthouse?
Here are some steps that you may want to take before, and after, leaving the courthouse:
- Review the order before you leave the courthouse. If you have any questions about it, be sure to ask the clerk or, if possible, the judge.
- Make several copies of the PFA order as soon as possible.
- Keep a copy of the PFA order with you at all times.
- Leave copies of the PFA order at your workplace, at your home, at your children’s school or daycare, in your car, with a sympathetic neighbor, and so on.
- Give a copy to the security guard or person at the front desk where you live and/or work along with a photo of the abuser.
- Give a copy of the order to anyone who is named in and protected by the order.
- You may wish to consider changing your locks, if permitted by law or by your lease, and your phone number.
You may also wish to make a safety plan. People can do a number of things to increase their safety during violent incidents, when preparing to leave an abusive relationship, and when they are at home, work, and school. Many batterers obey protective orders, but some do not and it is important to build on the things you have already been doing to keep yourself safe. Click on the following link for suggestions on Safety Tips.