FAQ - Domestic Violence and Harassment

How do I ask for an order of protection?

You can fill out a petition for an Order of Protection in two ways—either online with AZPOINT or on paper at a courthouse. There is no fee to file a petition for an Order of Protection or to have it served on the person from whom you are seeking protection.

Online

AZPOINT (https://azpoint.azcourts.gov/) is a free application that is designed to help you fill out the paperwork for a protective order. There is NO FEE to use AZPOINT. You can use AZPOINT on a desktop computer, a smartphone, a laptop, or a tablet (an iPad, for example). At AZPOINT, you can set up an account and, through a guided interview, work on your court documents at your own speed. Your draft documents will remain in your AZPOINT account for 90 days while you work on them.

You will need a valid email address to set up your AZPOINT account. The website explains how to get a new email address if the person you are seeking protection from knows how to get into your email account or has access to your passwords or devices.

There is a safety button (an escape button) in AZPOINT, but it does not wipe browser history. You may want to consider doing that if this person has access to your devices. AZPOINT will create a confirmation number for your petition. Please keep your confirmation number confidential. When you are ready to proceed with your petition, you must file it with a court. You will need the confirmation number generated by AZPOINT so that court staff can pull up your documents.

To find a nearby court, click Find My Court. You can file with any city court, justice court, or superior court. But if you have a family court case with the other person, you must file with the superior court that is handling the family court case.

Paper

If you wish to file your documents on paper, the court will provide the forms to you at no cost. You will be asked to fill out the Plaintiff Information Sheet, the petition, and the Service of Process Information Form. Fill out the forms provided by the court and return them to court staff.

Whether you prepare your petition in AZPOINT or on paper, it is important to know that a copy of the petition will be given to the defendant if an Order of Protection is issued and sent out for service. Although an order may protect more than one person (one plaintiff and other protected persons), it can be issued against only one defendant. A separate petition must be completed for each person against whom you want to be protected.

Each petition must have:

  • Name of the defendant
  • Date of birth of the defendant (or a reasonable estimate).
  • A specific statement listing all acts and approximate dates of domestic violence that the defendant has committed against you within the past year. (The 1 year requirement may be waived if the defendant is out of state, incarcerated, or good cause is shown.)
  • Your address and telephone number so the court can contact you if the defendant requests a hearing. (By law, this information is confidential and will be withheld from the defendant.)
  • An address, if known, at which the defendant can be legally served with the court order. At minimum, you must provide a city where you think the defendant can be located. If you cannot make your best guess, please provide the name of your own city.

Resources:
•    Protective order forms

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This website has been prepared for general information purposes only. The information on this website is not legal advice. Legal advice is dependent upon the specific circumstances of each situation. Also, the law may vary from state-to-state or county-to-county, so that some information in this website may not be correct for your situation. Finally, the information contained on this website is not guaranteed to be up to date. Therefore, the information contained in this website cannot replace the advice of competent legal counsel licensed in your jurisdiction.

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