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Meet Our Attorneys
Lee Ciccarelli

Lee Ciccarelli

Lee Ciccarelli is the founder and managing partner of Ciccarelli Law Offices with over two decades experience as a practicing attorney.

Joshua Tebay

Joshua Tebay

Joshua Tebay is an experienced attorney and former prosecutor licensed to practice in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Michael E. Houghton

Michael E. Houghton

Michael E. Houghton brings both passion and enthusiasm to criminal defense through his extensive knowledge and experience.

Timothy Kraeer

Timothy Kraeer

Timothy Kraeer is a highly experienced traffic attorney who handles related criminal and civil matters across the state.

Ann DelCollo

Ann DelCollo

Since 1992, Ann has been advocating for her clients both in and out of tough courtrooms of Philadelphia, which has cultivated her craft.

David Strenfel

David Strenfel

David Strenfel is a highly experienced attorney who focuses on trial advocacy, constitutional law, and criminal defense.

Jonathon Luff

Jonathon Luff

Jonathon Luff has successfully represented countless clients and gain freedom for many wrongfully accused individuals.

Office Locations
Our Locations
Primary Location
304 North High Street West Chester, PA 19380
Secondary Locations

These locations are available by appointment only

1515 Market St., #200 Philadelphia, PA 19102
135 East State St. Kennett Square, PA 19380
600 West Germantown Pike Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462
1489 Baltimore Pike Ste 221 Springfield, PA 19064
101 Lindenwood Dr, Ste 225 Malvern, PA 19355
150 N. Radnor Chester Rd Ste. F200, Radnor, PA 19087
313 West Liberty St., Ste 341 Lancaster, PA 17603
Reasonable Fees

Our firm provides excellent services at reasonable fees and accepts a variety of payment methods, including most major credit card providers.

We accept payment from most major credit card providers, including Via, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover
Superb Avvo Rating

Lee Ciccarelli has received a 10.0 (Superb) rating on Avvo, the highest possible rating for attorneys on the site. This rating is given based on client reviews, peer endorsements, and professional experience and credentials.

Avvo Top Attorney Criminal Defense

Protection From Abuse (PFA) Hearing

Protection from Abuse (PFA) orders are invaluable tools in ensuring the safety of victims of domestic violence. Unfortunately, there are occasionally instances in which a spouse or intimate partner either manufactures or exaggerates claims of abuse when seeking one of these orders, often to create an advantage for him or herself in a divorce settlement or child custody dispute.

It is extremely important for any person who has been served a PFA order to take the matter very seriously. Failing to appear at a final PFA hearing can result in a maximum three-year PFA order being issued, and the potential consequences are not only next to impossible to undo but the order also becomes a matter of permanent record that will come up on most routine background checks.

West Chester PFA Hearing Lawyer

If you were recently served a PFA order in Southeastern Pennsylvania, it is critical that you make sure that you have experienced legal counsel before you appear at your final hearing. Ciccarelli Law Offices assists clients from Chester County, Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Lancaster County, and Delaware County in these matters.

If someone has filed a petition for a PFA order against you in bad faith, our PFA hearing attorneys can investigate the circumstances of your case and develop the strongest possible defense so you face as few consequences as possible when a judge issues a ruling. Call (610) 719-3200 right now to have our firm review your case during a free, confidential consultation.

Pennsylvania PFA Hearing Information Center

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Process Before Final Chester County PFA Hearing

Any person who has been allegedly abused by a current or former spouse, parent, child, sexual or intimate partner, or another individual related by blood or marriage can file a petition for a PFA order with the Court of Common Pleas in the county where he or she lives or works, the county where the alleged offender lives or works, or the county where the abuse took place. The alleged victim may receive one of two types of orders:

  • Emergency PFA Order — If the alleged victim is seeking immediate protection during a time that court is not in session, law enforcement may supply him or her with a way to contact an on-call magisterial district judge who can grant an emergency order that only lasts until the following business day when the court reopens.
  • Ex Parte Temporary PFA Order — This order may be granted if an alleged victim presents information to a judge that demonstrates he or she and/or his or her children have been abused and are in danger of further abuse. The alleged offender is not present in court when this evidence is presented. An ex parte PFA order is also temporary, but it will stay in effect until the final hearing date that is typically scheduled within the next 10 business days.

A final PFA order can be issued following the final hearing. This hearing is the alleged offender’s opportunity to present his or her own evidence and call his or her own witnesses. If both sides are able to reach an agreement, a judge may issue a final order without a hearing.

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What is at Stake at Pennsylvania PFA Hearing

The possible limitations imposed by a PFA order can have a profound impact on the life of an alleged offender. Some of the rights that you could stand to lose or other ways you could be adversely affected by an unfavorable PFA ruling include:

  • Employment problems because of background checks
  • Eviction from your home
  • Having to provide suitable alternate housing to the alleged victim and/or minor children
  • Loss of child custody or visitation rights
  • Loss of your Second Amendment rights
  • Paying financial support to parties you are considered to have a duty to support
  • Paying the alleged victim for losses resulting from the alleged abuse

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Order of Events at PFA Hearings in Chester County

While every court handles certain aspects differently, the final PFA hearing process is largely the same. All alleged offenders need to keep in mind that the no-contact orders that are part of ex parte PFAs are still in effect when entering the courthouse, so they must avoid confronting their alleged victims before the hearings.

Generally, a hearing usually follows this course of events:

  • Alleged victim testimony — The first side of the story that the court hears is from the alleged victim, who also presents evidence and calls witnesses. The alleged offender reserves the right to cross-examine the alleged victim and his or her witnesses following their testimony. The judge may also ask questions.
  • Alleged offender testimony — The court then hears the alleged offender’s side of the story. He or she then has the opportunity to call his or her own witnesses and present evidence. The alleged victim then gets the chance to cross-examine the alleged offender and his or her witnesses, and the judge again also might ask questions.
  • Redirect — If necessary, an alleged victim may provide rebuttal testimony based upon what was presented by the alleged offender.
  • Judge’s decision — The judge will then deliver his or her ruling, but the amount of time it takes can very. He or she may do so immediately upon the conclusion of all testimony, there may be a short recess while he or she reviews the facts, or it could take several weeks. If the judge does not provide a final decision that day, then he or she may extend the temporary PFA order until he or she rules on the case.

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Find a PFA Hearing Lawyer in West Chester

Have you been served a PFA order in Southeastern Pennsylvania? You should not delay in making sure that you have legal representation who will fight to protect your best interests.

Ciccarelli Law Offices has offices in West Chester, Lancaster, Kennett Square, Radnor, Plymouth Square, Malvern, Philadelphia, and King of Prussia. Our PFA hearing attorneys will provide a thorough evaluation of your case as soon as you call (610) 719-3200 to take advantage of a free, no obligation consultation.

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