Step 1: Apply for a personal protection order
To apply for a personal protection order (PPO), you may wish to bring any police or medical reports (evidencing the family violence suffered by you) you may have to the Family Justice Courts. However, it is not compulsory for you to have copies of these reports when you apply for a PPO.
The person making the application for the PPO is the “complainant” while the person who faces the complaint is known as the “respondent”.
After the complainant submits his/ her complaint, he/ she will file and swear or affirm the complaint before a Judge.
Assuming all is in order, a summons will be issued to the respondent.
If there is imminent danger, an expedited order (EO) may be given. This serves as a temporary protection order and lasts for 28 days from the date it is served to the respondent. The Court may extend the expedited order.
Step 2: Serving the summons
The complainant needs to pay the prescribed fee for the summons to be issued to the respondent. The summons cannot be served on the respondent if he/ she is not in Singapore.
Step 3: Court mentions
After service of the summons on the respondent, the case will be “mentioned” in Court 1 of the Family Justice Courts on another day and the Judge may refer parties to proceed for counselling.
If the complainant fails to turn up, his/ her application may be struck out. If the respondent fails to turn up, a Warrant of Arrest will be issued against him/ her.
Should parties agree on the issuance of the PPO, the Judge may grant the order to the complainant.
Otherwise, the Court will give directions for parties to exchange affidavits (statements providing information on what happened between parties). Lawyers will be able to assist parties in the preparation of the affidavits.
Step 4: Trial
Eventually, if parties are not able to resolve their differences out of Court, there will be a trial after which the Court will decide if a PPO should be granted.
The Court will grant a PPO if it is satisfied that family violence has been committed or is likely to be committed against you, and that the PPO is necessary for the complainant’s protection.
Your family lawyer can assist by:
1. Advising you on the strength of your case (if you are applying for a PPO or if a PPO application has been made against you).
2. Advising you on your rights.
3. Ensuring that your interests and concerns are addressed.
4. Drafting and filing the documents required by the Court.
5. Representing you in Court mentions and the trial.
6. Representing you in negotiations with the other party.
You may also be interested to read more about: