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"Served" means the order is given, in person, to the named individual on the document. A sheriff or police officer serves protective orders. Preliminary Protective Orders or Protective Orders are served as soon as law enforcement makes contact with the respondent. If you are not aware of whether the order has been served you can call the Police Department at 434-970-3280 or the Victim Witness Office at 434-970-3176.
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When your name is called go to the front of the courtroom. Only you and/or your attorney, if you hired one, can speak for you. The judge will ask you questions. Listen carefully, answer them completely, tell the truth and speak clearly. The other person’s attorney may ask you questions. Do not interrupt while anyone else is speaking. If you have any questions or do not understand something, ask the judge before you leave the courtroom.
A law enforcement officer will serve the Protective Order to the person from whom you want protection. A Protective Order is not valid until that person gets a copy. This is called "personal service". At the full hearing, where both parties are present and go before the judge, the order will be given to both of you at the end of the hearing if the judge enters the order. Do not leave the courtroom without a copy of the order.
If your Protective Order is violated, you should immediately call 911 and tell law enforcement that you have a Protective Order and the abuser is violating it. You should also notify the Victim Witness Office, located in the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office and/or the court.