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What is the Law in Kentucky on Domestic Violence?

The text of the Kentucky Revised Statutes on Domestic Violence and Abuse is available from the Commonwealth's Kentucky Revised Statutes website.

The following are pertinent sections of the domestic violence statutes in Kentucky which you will find at the above site for the Kentucky General Assembly's Legislative Research Commission (LRC).


EPOs are temporary protection orders good for a maximum of 14 days.  DVOs are awarded after an EPO hearing at which the accused abuser has an opportunity to be heard by the Court and are good for a maximum of three years.  EPOs and DVOs are available only to victims of domestic violence who are (a) married to their abuser, (b) cohabitating with their abuser or (c) have a child in common with their abuser.  Victims who do not qualify for an EPO/DVO may be able to obtain an Interpersonal Protection Order (IPO), explained below.

  • 403.715 Interpretation of KRS 403.715 to 403.785 by court.
  • 403.720 Definitions for KRS 403.715 to 403.785.
  • 403.725 Petition, who may file -- Protective orders.
  • 403.730 Petition -- Contents -- Form -- Filing fee.
  • 403.735 Review by court -- Access to emergency protective orders -- Local protocol in domestic violence matters -- Time at which orders of protection take effect.
  • 403.737 Forms for documents entered into Law Information Network of Kentucky.
  • 403.740 Emergency protective order.
  • 403.745 Hearing.
  • 403.750 Court orders -- Amendment.
    • 403.7505 Standards for mental health professionals providing court-mandated treatment -- List of certified providers to Administrative Office of the Courts -- Distribution of compiled data.
  • 403.751 Statement to assist out-of-state court in determining whether protective order is entitled to full faith and credit.
    • 403.7521 Foreign protective orders -- Filing -- Affidavit certifying validity -- Uncertified orders.
    • 403.7524 Authentication of foreign protective orders.
    • 403.7527 Enforcement of foreign protective orders.
    • 403.7529 Presumption of validity -- Enforcement by peace officers.
    • 403.7531 Clearing of foreign protective orders from Law Information Network of Kentucky.
    • 403.7535 Changes in orders -- Notification.
    • 403.7539 Civil and criminal proceedings for violations of foreign protective orders.
    • 403.755 Enforcement by law enforcement agency.
  • 403.760 Contempt of court.
  • 403.763 Criminal penalty for violation of protective order.
  • 403.765 Existence of domestic violence protective orders -- Efficacy of existing orders.
  • 403.770 Nonpublication of petitioner's and minor children's addresses -- Forwarding of order to Law Information Network of Kentucky and other agencies.
  • 403.771 Printout of foreign orders -- Annual validation.
  • 403.775 Effect of petitioner's leaving residence.
  • 403.780 Testimony not admissible in criminal proceeding.
  • 403.783 Model law enforcement domestic violence policy and procedures manual --Distribution -- Agency submission to Justice Cabinet -- Assistance by cabinet when policy inadequate.
  • 403.784 Training and continuing education courses for law enforcement officers.
  • 403.785 Duties of law enforcement agencies.


INTERPERSONAL PROTECTIVE ORDERS -- For dating individuals who are NOT cohabitating, who do NOT have a child in common and who are NOT married to each other.  IPOs are available to victims of dating violence and abuse, victims of stalking, victims of sexual assault or to an adult filing for protection of a victim of personal violence who is a minor.

See KRS 456 at http://www.lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=44769 


Return to our main Domestic Violence page to learn more about protecting yourself and the ones you love from physical, emotional and sexual abuse from an intimate partner