Ohio law provides for domestic violence protection orders under both criminal and civil law. Here are the differences between the two types of orders:
Criminal protection order. A criminal protection order, also known as a temporary protection order (TPO), provides more limited relief and lasts for a shorter time than a civil protection order. The victim, a family member or the arresting officer can ask the court to issue a TPO as soon as a criminal complaint has been filed against the alleged abuser. The order requires the abuser to stay away from the victim and the victim’s home, workplace or school. The order cannot contain any provisions about child support, spousal support, personal property, custody or visitation. A TPO remains in effect only during the criminal proceeding.
Civil protection order. A civil protection order provides the same protection as a TPO, but it also can award temporary spousal and child support, temporary custody and visitation, and possession of personal property, including automobiles. The civil order also can require defendant to undergo counseling. A civil protection order can remain in effect for as long as five years. A victim of domestic violence can seek a civil protection order by filing a petition with a domestic relations court.