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Legal Information: Pennsylvania

Restraining Orders

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Laws current as of December 15, 2023

What is the legal definition of sexual violence or intimidation in Pennsylvania?

For the purpose of getting a protection from sexual violence or intimidation order, the abuser must have committed one of two crimes against you: “sexual violence” or “intimidation” (although the abuser does not have to be arrested/reported to the police).

Sexual violence is defined as actions that fall under any of these crimes:

  • sexual offenses (listed under Title 18, Chapter 31 of the law - we list many here);
  • endangering the welfare of children if the offense involved sexual contact with the children;
  • corruption of minors; 
  • sexual abuse of children; 
  • unlawful contact with a minor; or  
  • sexual exploitation of children.1

Intimidation is when an abuser, who is 18 or older, commits either of these crimes against you if you are under the age of 18:

1 42 Pa.C.S. § 62A03