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In the event that you are domestically victimized, you may wish to file a protective order. In the state of Kentucky, there is a difference between protective orders and criminal cases. A criminal charge of domestic abuse is typically handled by the county attorney, who will then be actively prosecuting an instance of domestic violence that has already occurred. In contrast, a protective order is designed to keep future instances of violence from happening. According to the State of Kentucky, you can file for either an Emergency Protective Order or a Domestic Violence Order for domestic situations, or a Temporary Interpersonal Protective Order or an Interpersonal Protective Order for dating or stalking situations.

Generally, an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) or a Temporary Interpersonal Protective Order (TIPO) is issued in an emergency situation where the filer feels as though his/her safety is immediately at risk and something must be done quickly. Generally speaking, these restraining orders last for up to 14 days, or long enough for the situation to be heard in court.

In the event that and EPO or TIPO is issued, the situation is transferred as quickly as possible to court. If deemed necessary by the court, this is when longer-term protection orders will be issued. In the state of Kentucky, these come in the form of either Domestic Violence Orders (DVO) or Interpersonal Protective Orders (IPO).Both of these longer-term protection orders can be in effect for up to three years.

In the event that you believe that your DVO or IPO should be extended to protect yourself, you will need to file for the extension before the original expires.