Central Florida Restraining Order Attorney
A restraining order is a type of injunction in which the primary goal is to protect people from violence or stalking. An injunction is a court order to continue or cease actions between multiple parties. Injunctions are often referred to as restraining orders but they are a bit different.
For example, a temporary restraining order (TRO) is usually issued while a final injunction is being worked out in court. These hearings can have serious long-term effects on your life and can bring serious charges if you violate the court order.
Types of Restraining Orders
There are five types of restraining orders/injunctions:
- Dating Violence – For those victims who have had a dating or intimate relationship with an abuser, and who have suffered violence or believe that violence is imminent, filing a dating violence injunction is appropriate.
- Sexual Violence – Sexual violence has more than one definition – it is commonly identified as an incident of sexual battery. Anyone who has been a victim of sexual violence can seek a sexual violence injunction.
- Domestic Violence – A domestic violence restraining order is used to protect family or household members from assault, battery, sexual assault, stalking, kidnapping, and any other offenses resulting in physical injury.
- Stalking – Any person who is a victim of stalking, or the parent or legal guardian of a minor child victimized by stalking, may seek an injunction for protection against stalking.
- Repeat Violence – If an injunction petitioner does not have a relationship with the offender but they are the victim of repeat violence, they can file an injunction for this type of protection order.
If you violate any of the above injunctions you may be held in contempt of court. You may also face a first-degree misdemeanor charge which can bring up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Repeat violations can bring heavier charges such as a third-degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine. That is why it is imperative to have an attorney with you during these hearings.
Process for Filing a Restraining Order
The first step in filing a restraining order is filing the Petition. A judge will consider whether to issue a temporary injunction pending a final hearing. The judge will decide whether to issue a temporary injunction based on whether there is an immediate risk of violence or serious injury, threats of violence, or serious bodily injury.
If the judge issues a temporary injunction, a final hearing for the injunction will be scheduled within 15 days of the temporary injunction. At the final hearing, all evidence supporting the claim for the injunction will be presented, including witnesses, photographs, videos, etc.
If the judge issues a permanent injunction, it will remain in place until modified or dissolved by the court.
The injunction may expire on a specific date or may be extended beyond its expiration date, as long as a request is made to extend the injunction before the expiration date.
The court will consider the circumstances that led to the first injunction, as well as any events that the petitioner believes could lead to violence in the future when deciding whether to extend the injunction.
Injunctions filed in Florida are enforceable nationwide. Injunctions or orders of protection against domestic violence issued by a court out of state are fully enforceable by Florida courts and law enforcement.
If an injunction is ordered against you, it could very likely be permanent. If it was a Domestic Violence injunction, that means you must surrender all firearms in your possession and cannot be in possession of a firearm. Failure to do so will bring a first-degree misdemeanor charge.
If you are the petitioner in a domestic violence injunction, the respondent is not legally allowed to own or possess a firearm. This may help you sleep better at night.
Central Florida Restraining Order Attorney
Here at Gans Law we represent both petitioners and respondents of injunctions/restraining orders and are familiar with both sides of these cases. If you are thinking about filing an injunction or have had one filed against you, give us a call for a free consultation.