Judges and Court Personnel
Webinar Recording: Understanding & Responding to Stalking in the Court of Common Pleas
Stalking cases are heard every day in civil and criminal courtrooms across Pennsylvania. This pre-recorded webinar for judges, by national experts from the national Stalking Resource Center, informs courts how to identify stalking and respond to it with appropriate sanctions and monitoring.
Webinar Recording: Working with Victims of Domestic Violence in Later Life
Watching this webinar can prepare court personnel to:
- Define domestic violence in later life and challenges faced by older victims
- Recognize accommodations in the courthouse environment that older individuals may require
- Identify ways to enhance access to justice for victims of domestic violence in later life
Watch the webinar
Technical Assistance 1-888-235-3425 or 717-671-4767
The Legal Department offers training and technical assistance for members of the judiciary, minor judiciary and court personnel regarding the Protection From Abuse (PFA) Act, case law and procedures, state and federal firearms law, minors and domestic violence, compliance with the Federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), and domestic violence resources, information, statistics and other materials. Staff assists counties in developing systems and protocols that respond effectively to domestic violence victims.
Judges and court personnel are invited to call with questions regarding the PFA Act, procedure, forms, enforcement, firearms, child custody and domestic violence, domestic violence information and statistics, domestic violence fatalities, court interpreters and other domestic violence resources.
The Legal Department's attorneys and advocates have assisted Pennsylvania justice system personnel with questions about:
- Custody modification in PFA orders
- Violation of no-contact PFAs through social network web sites
- VAWA prohibitions against posting PFA records on government web sites
- ICC when defendant does not relinquish firearms as ordered
- Filing of out-of-state protection orders
Training and technical assistance is funded by a grant awarded by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, using funds originating from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.
Contact PCADV's Legal Department at 1-888-235-3425 or 717-671-4767 about customized training for your county, region or professional conference.
Visit PCADV's Training Institute
Recent training topics for Pennsylvania court system audiences:
- Protection From Abuse (PFA) Act and Case Law
- Stalking and Technology
- State and Federal Firearms Prohibitions
- Responding to Teen Dating Violence, Sexual Abuse and Stalking in Schools and Through the Justice System
- Strangulation Prosecution and Evidence
- Unauthorized Practice of Law (UPL)
- Working with Victims, Vicarious Trauma and Burnout
Tools from PCADV
Pennsylvania Domestic Violence Benchbook
Written under the direction of a group of judicial leaders from across Pennsylvania, the Benchbook addresses evidence, pro se litigants, emerging practices in addressing domestic violence, criminal court concerns, teen dating violence and a variety of civil court issues including PFA and custody cases. The Benchbook is intended to provide substantive legal information and tools for trial court judges, and to be a concise and thorough compilation of statutory and case law related to domestic violence. Revisions as well as new chapters are written to keep the Benchbook current with Pennsylvania and federal laws. The Benchbook is not available electronically, but is provided to Pennsylvania trial and appellate court judges upon request. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Pennsylvania Protection From Abuse Act Annotated
The PFA Act Annotated contains the full text of the Act, 23 Pa.C.S. sections 6101 - 6123, and appellate case law annotations within the applicable sections. The PFA Annotated also describes cases relevant to the PFA Act's relationship with other proceedings: custody, divorce, dependency. Cases are also indexed by relevant section.
- PFA Act Annotated
624.51 K | 6/3/2013
The Pennsylvania Protection From Abuse Act
The full text of the Act, 23 Pa.C.S. sections 6101 - 6123
Court Access: Domestic Violence Newsletter for Court Personnel
Court personnel may be the "first responders" to domestic violence victims in the court system. Court Access keeps key workers in PFA offices, court administration, judicial support, and domestic relations offices informed about working effectively with domestic violence victims and PFA litigants. Court Access is distributed to email subscribers twice yearly at no charge.
- September 2013
New Rules of Civil Procedure for Family Courts - Attachment A - Unrecorded PFA Orders Endanger Lives
4.69 Meg | 10/1/2013
- May 2013
Safety in the Courtroom, for Court Personnel, for Litigants, Jurors, Witnesses and the Public - Best Practices for Court Safety - Safety Outside the Courthouse - Unified Judicial System Safety Recommendations for PFA Hearings - Can a Defendant Violate a No Contact Order By Speaking With the Plaintiff at the Courthouse?
7.35 Meg | 10/1/2013
- April 2013
In Camera Review Ruled Unconstitutional - Altering Temporary Protection From Abuse Procedure to Meet Due Process: Ferko-Fox v. Fox Ruling and Implementation
2.74 Meg | 4/26/2013
STOP Newsletter - Services. Training. Officers. Prosecutors.
The STOP Program encourages the development and improvement of effective law enforcement and prosecution strategies to address violent crimes against women and children. PCADV is awarded grants to provide training and technical assistance to STOP team members, including law enforcement, prosecutors, courts and victim services providers. The STOP Newsletter contains articles about the Protection From Abuse (PFA) Act, technology and safety advocacy, stalking, firearms, primary aggressor and related issues. It is distributed free to email subscribers on a quarterly basis.
- March 2013
How Courts Can Reduce Gun Violence, PCAR's Campus Law Enforcement Trainings on Sexual Violence
1.77 Meg | 8/16/2013
The Jurist: A Newsletter for Pennsylvania Judges About Domestic Violence
Pennsylvania judges may subscribe to The Jurist newsletter. Through a free email subscription, the courts have access to case law updates, articles about domestic violence, national and local training opportunities and helpful tools such as judicial bench cards and web resources. Pennsylvania judges may subscribe by calling 888-235-3425.
- September 2013
New Rules of Civil Procedure for Family Courts - Sample Pro Se Entry of Appearance Form - Sample Petition to Modify - Unrecorded PFA Orders Endanger Lives - Attachment A
3.31 Meg | 10/1/2013
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Keep Up with PCADV´s Latest News and Events
If you fear for your immediate safety, call 9-1-1 or your local police.
Contact the domestic violence program in your area for free and confidential help.
Other victim programs are available to help you and your family.
Any attorney helping a domestic violence victim may contact the PCADV legal department at 888-235-3425 for information on law and legal procedures. (This is not a helpline for victims.)
The information provided on this website is intended for informational purposes only. The information provided under this topic is not legal advice, does not create an attorney-client relationship, and is not a substitute for contacting an experienced attorney. Read our full legal disclaimer.
- Internet Records Confidentiality under the 2005 Violence Against Women Act PCADV, 2010.
- Practical Implications of Current Domestic Violence Research: For Law Enforcement, Prosecutors and Judges National Institute of Justice, June 2009. What the research tells us about domestic violence, its perpetrators and victims, the impact of current responses and the implications for day-to-day, real-world responses to domestic violence.
- Parental Alienation Syndrome and Parental Alienation: Research Reviews by Joan S. Meier, VAWnet, 2009. Over-view of PAS and PA, identifies strategic issues for advocates working with abused women and children, and offers guidelines to improve courts' treatment of these issues.
- Responding to Elder Abuse: What Judges and Court Personnel Should Know, (DVD), OVC, August 2010, NCJ 223415
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Administrative Regulations for Court Interpreters in Pennsylvania
Judicial Benchcard for Court Interpretation in Protection Order Hearings informs the court know what to expect from an interpreter and how the court can assist communication in interpreter proceedings
Pennsylvania Administrative Regulations for Court Interpreters for Persons with Limited English Proficiency and for Persons who are Deaf or Heard of Hearing (regulations) Effective May 1, 2010, guidelines to implement the Interpreter Statute
Language Access Guidance Letter from U.S. Justice Department - 2010 guidance for chief justices and administrators of state courts clarifying the obligation of courts that receive federal financial assistance to provide oral interpretation, written translation and other language services to people who are limited English proficient (LEP).
I Speak Card Flashcard from the U.S. Census Bureau that the court can use to determine the language that the litigant speaks. "Mark this box if you read or speak (each different language)."
Protection From Abuse documents translated into the eleven most commonly encountered languages in the Pennsylvania court system
Criminal Protective Order documents are translated into five languages for Pennsylvania courts