Personal Protection Orders

You can apply for a Personal Protection Order if you have reason to believe that someone will harm you. You do not need to have an attorney to ask the court for a Personal Protection Order. You will need to go to Wayne County Circuit Court, to the Sheriff's office on the 17th floor, to begin the process. You will need to fill out a form and in that form, will be asked to detail the circumstances that led you to request the Personal Protection Order. You will be directed to a courtroom and may be asked to testify as to these circumstances on the record in front of a judge. The judge will either grant your personal protection order, deny it, or set it for a hearing. If it is set for a hearing, the court will notify the "respondent" (person you are asking for an order against) about the hearing. If the order is granted, it is necessary to serve the respondent personally. The sheriff's office will generally take care of this, or if necessary, you would have a copy of the order with you in the event that it is necessary to call the police, at which time, the police would officially "serve" the order. You should also take steps to assure your safety, including if appropriate, contacting Domestic Violence organizations.
Here is some more detailed information about Personal Protection Orders. Although you do not need to have an attorney, it may be helpful to work with an attorney to help to sort out the circumstances of your case, and to make sure that they are communicated to the court in the petition for the Personal Protection Order. Your attorney may also help you with getting copies of police reports, medical reports or other information, although those are not required to obtain a PPO.
According to Michigan Compiled Laws 600.2950, an individual may petition the family division of circuit court to enter a personal protection order to restrain or enjoin a spouse, a former spouse, an individual with whom he or she has had a child in common, an individual with whom he or she has or has had a dating relationship, or an individual residing or having resided in the same household as the petitioner from doing 1 or more of the following:
(a) Entering onto premises.
(b) Assaulting, attacking, beating, molesting, or wounding a named individual.
(c) Threatening to kill or physically injure a named individual.
(d) Removing minor children from the individual having legal custody of the children, except as otherwise authorized by a custody or parenting time order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction.
(e) Purchasing or possessing a firearm.
(f) Interfering with petitioner's efforts to remove petitioner's children or personal property from premises that are solely owned or leased by the individual to be restrained or enjoined.
(g) Interfering with petitioner at petitioner's place of employment or education or engaging in conduct that impairs petitioner's employment or educational relationship or environment.
(h) Having access to information in records concerning a minor child of both petitioner and respondent that will inform respondent about the address or telephone number of petitioner and petitioner's minor child or about petitioner's employment address.
(j) Any other specific act or conduct that imposes upon or interferes with personal liberty or that causes a reasonable apprehension of violence.
The court may issue this order if it determines that there is reasonable cause to believe that the individual to be restrained or enjoined may commit 1 or more of the acts listed above. There are other rules and considerations, but these are the main ideas. There is a separate law, 600.2950a that applies to individuals who do not have the relationships listed above to the petitioner.