Protected in Ohio: A Guide to Temporary, Civil, Criminal & Stalking Protection Orders

Protected in Ohio: A Guide to Temporary, Civil, Criminal & Stalking Protection Orders

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Feeling unsafe and needing protection from someone’s threatening behavior? In Ohio, there are legal tools at your disposal to establish safety and prevent future harm. These tools come in the form of Protection Orders, which are court-issued directives that restrict the actions of another person towards you.

However, with different types of Protection Orders available, navigating the system can be confusing. This blog post is here to help. We’ll break down the various Protection Orders, including Temporary Protection Orders (TPOs), Civil Protection Orders (CPOs), Criminal Protection Orders, and Stalking Protection Orders (both Civil and Anti-Stalking). By understanding the differences between these orders, you can determine which path best suits your specific situation.

Types of Protection Orders in Ohio

Knowing which type of Protection Order to pursue depends on the nature of the threat and your relationship to the person you need protection from. Here’s a breakdown of the four main categories:

  • Temporary Protection Order (TPO): This is a fast-acting order intended for emergency situations, often involving domestic violence. A TPO can be granted by a judge ex parte, meaning without the other party present, if there’s good cause to believe you’re in immediate danger. However, a TPO is temporary, typically lasting only 7-10 days, until a hearing can be held to determine if a more permanent order is necessary.
  • Civil Protection Order (CPO): A CPO is designed to prevent future abuse or harassment from someone you have a specific relationship with, such as a spouse, ex-partner, family member, or housemate. Unlike a TPO, a CPO requires a formal court hearing where both parties have the opportunity to present evidence. If granted, a CPO can remain in effect for a longer period, up to five years.
  • Criminal Protection Order (CPO): It’s important to distinguish this from a Civil Protection Order (CPO). A Criminal Protection Order is issued in conjunction with criminal charges, not for domestic violence or situations involving family or household members. This type of order is used when someone you don’t have a close relationship with commits a specific crime against you, such as menacing or assault.
  • Stalking Protection Orders (SPO): If you’re experiencing repeated unwanted contact or behavior that causes you to fear for your safety, a Stalking Protection Order may be an option. There are two types:
    • Civil Stalking Protection Order (CSPO): This order can be obtained for non-family or household members who are exhibiting stalking behavior.
    • Anti-Stalking Protection Order (SPO): This order is issued in conjunction with criminal stalking charges. 

Commonalities and Differences: Protection Orders in Ohio

Type of Order

Who Can File



Process for Obtaining

Temporary Protection Order (TPO)

Victim of domestic violence or threat of violence

Immediate protection from harm

7-10 days

Ex Parte petition, followed by a hearing

Civil Protection Order (CPO)

Victim of abuse or harassment from family or household member

Prevent future abuse or harassment

Up to 5 years

File a petition, attend hearing

Criminal Protection Order (Criminal CPO)

Victim of crime (not domestic violence)

Protection from someone not a family or household member

Varies depending on criminal case

Issued with criminal charges

Civil Stalking Protection Order (CSPO)

Victim of stalking from someone not a family or household member

Prevent future stalking behavior

Up to 5 years

File a petition, attend hearing

Anti-Stalking Protection Order (SPO)

Victim of stalking (criminal charges filed)

Protection from someone

Varies depending on criminal case

Issued with criminal stalking charges

Seeking Legal Help

Navigating the legal system surrounding Protection Orders can be complex. Understanding the different types of orders and the process for obtaining them is crucial, but having the right legal representation by your side can make all the difference.

The experienced attorneys at The Meade Law Group can guide you through every step of the Protection Order process, from determining the most appropriate order for your situation to filing petitions, representing you in court hearings, and ensuring your rights are protected.

We understand the urgency and sensitivity involved in Protection Order cases. Our team is committed to providing compassionate and effective legal representation to help you achieve safety and peace of mind.

Contact The Meade Law Group today.

We’re here to help you navigate the legal process and secure the protection you deserve.

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