Spivak Law Firm | Pittsburgh, PA

Based in Pittsburgh, PA

412-344-4900

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PFA Lawyer Pittsburgh

NFL and Domestic Abuse

An advocacy group is urging the Cincinnati Bengals to speak out against domestic violence after the team drafted a player who punched a woman in the face.

The Bengals are not the only team receiving backlash. In the 2017 NFL Draft, at least a half-dozen players who have been accused of physical or sexual assaults were welcomed to the NFL.

By ignoring these issues, the NFL encourages the cycle of violence and undermines the importance of protecting domestic-abuse victims, according to the group.

Spivak Law Firm helps victims of domestic violence get the legal protections they need at Protection From Abuse (PFA) hearings and by working with prosecutors on criminal domestic-violence cases. To schedule a consultation, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 ortoll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA Consequences

Because courts overwhelmingly grant Protection From Abuse (PFA) orders, the system itself is frequently abused by people seeking leverage in divorce and child-custody actions.

In fact, the mere accusation of abuse can devastate a person’s life and reputation.

In Pennsylvania, a PFA can:

  • Evict you from your home;
  • Take away your firearms;
  • Appear on your permanent record;
  • Prevent you from seeing your children; and
  • Result in serious criminal charges.

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, aggressive defense at PFA hearings. We have successfully defended many people whose careers were at risk, including; police officers, corrections officers, homeland-security officers, teachers, and nurses.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law and criminal defense with a special focus on domestic violence and Protection From Abuse (PFA). Call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA and Same-Sex Couples

In May, Louisiana lawmakers voted to remove the requirement that a victim be of the opposite sex of the alleged offender to be considered a victim of domestic violence.

Representative Patrick Connick, the author of the bill, has argued that because the U.S. Supreme Court has legalized gay marriage, same-sex couples should be receiving equal protection under the law.

In Louisiana, a person charged with committing domestic violence is held for 72 hours, in part to allow the victim to find a safe place to stay to escape further abuse. LGBT victims haven’t had that protection, which already puts them at risk.

Spivak Law Firm helps victims of domestic violence get the legal protections they need at Protection From Abuse (PFA) hearings and by working with prosecutors on criminal domestic-violence cases. To schedule a consultation, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA Orders in Pennsylvania

Q: What can a Protection From Abuse (PFA) order do?

A: In Pennsylvania, a Protection From Abuse Order can provide many protections, including:

  • Making the abuser leave the home.
  • Ordering the abuser to pay child support.
  • Prohibiting the abuser from contacting the victim.
  • Forcing the abuser to relinquish any firearms.

A PFA, also known as a restraining order, is a powerful tool to curb domestic violence.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law with a special focus on domestic violence and Protection From Abuse (PFA). Call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA May Carry Financial Penalties

A Protection from Abuse (PFA) Order is a powerful tool for restricting the rights of the accused. In addition to prohibiting contact with the victim, the Court may order the abuser to pay for reasonable losses suffered by the victim, including: medical, dental, relocation, and counseling expenses. The court may also order the defendant to pay for ongoing financial needs such as health insurance and mortgage payments.

If you have filed, or have been served with a PFA, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

5 Tips For PFA Defendants

If you have been served a Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order, you must adhere to each of the stipulations. Violating a PFA can result in serious criminal penalties.

Here are 5 tips for PFA defendants to avoid violations:

  • Do not contact the plaintiff in any way.
  • Avoid all places where you know the plaintiff goes.
  • Do not drive past the plaintiff’s residence.
  • Do not attempt to contact the plaintiff through their friends or family.
  • Retain an experienced PFA defense attorney.

Spivak Law Firm provides aggressive representation at PFA hearings in Pittsburgh and all surrounding counties, including: Allegheny County, Beaver County, Butler County, Fayette County, Indiana County, Washington County, and Westmoreland County.

To speak with an experienced PFA defense attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or (800) 545-9390.

Protect Against Online Harassment

 

Have you ever felt that your partner’s online behavior is out of control? Do they send constant messages that leave you feeling on-edge, use location features to track where you are, or demand to have access to your phone?

Here are some tips to protect yourself against online domestic abuse:

  • Use strong, unique passwords to keep your accounts from being hacked.
  • Use two-step verification to make your accounts more secure.
  • Back up your data to secure and collect evidence of harassment.
  • Browse the web privately so your partner cannot track your Internet history.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law with a special focus on domestic violence and Protection From Abuse (PFA). Call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Despite PFA, Man Guns Down Ex-Girlfriend

Man hitting table with fist, close-up

A Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order is a powerful tool that aims to restrict a perpetrator of domestic violence from having any contact with his victim.

But sometimes a PFA is just a piece of paper.

Earlier this year, 46-year-old business owner Stacey Pennington of central Pennsylvania was shot and killed by her former boyfriend Patrick Derr. She had an active PFA that prohibited him from possessing a firearm.

Four different women got PFAs against Mr. Derr in the last 20 years. Accusations included rape and multiple incidents of choking and strangling.

But none prevented the murder-suicide that occurred this past Labor Day in Mt. Gretna, a small town of just 1,500 people located 40 miles east of Harrisburg.

“She was the sweetest woman in the whole wide world,” said one woman at Ms. Pennington’s memorial.

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, compassionate representation for plaintiffs and defendants in PFA hearings. For a free consultation, call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA Defendants Must Hire An Attorney

DV Pic2Q: Will a public defender represent me at my Protection From Abuse (PFA) hearing?

A: No.

People accused of abuse often make the terrible mistake of appearing in PFA Court without a lawyer to defend them. Many think that a public defender – a “free” lawyer – will be appointed to represent them.

But a public defender is available to low-income people in criminal matters only. A PFA is not a criminal matter. A PFA hearing takes place in family court not criminal court.

A PFA is a civil restraining order that restricts an “abuser” from having any contact with the “victim.” A PFA only becomes a criminal matter if the “abuser” violates the PFA Order.

If you’ve been served with a PFA, you need an attorney experienced in family law and criminal defense to represent you. At Spivak Law Firm, we’ve helped hundreds of people get the PFA dismissed while preserving their child-custody rights and protecting their reputations.

Served with a PFA? Call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Pittsburgh Lawyer Gets PFA Against Businessman

SO000183Domestic violence knows no boundaries. It happens to young and old, rich and poor, black and white. It affects high-school dropouts and highly educated professionals.

Every day in Allegheny County, dozens of people arrive in family court for a Protection From Abuse (PFA) hearing. Last month, a well-respected Pittsburgh attorney sought protection against a successful entrepreneur.

Allegheny County Assistant District Attorney Lisa Pellegrini obtained a Temporary PFA against her former boyfriend, local restaurateur Ray Burg, for allegedly slamming her head against a car dashboard. Criminal charges are pending against Burg, owner of Burg’s In The Burgh, located on Forbes Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh.

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, aggressive representation for plaintiffs and defendants in PFA hearings. To speak with an experienced PFA lawyer, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.