“Domestic violence” is defined as any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.
Domestic violence is never acceptable and should never be tolerated. If you have been the victim of domestic violence a petition for an injunction for protection against domestic violence can be filed with the Clerk of Court. The Clerk of Court can provide you with all the necessary documents. Once the petition is filed, a Circuit Court Judge will review the petition and either enter a temporary injunction and set a hearing on the petition, enter no temporary injunction but still set a hearing on the petition, or deny the petition.
If a hearing is set, the court will notify both sides as to when and where the hearing will take place. At the hearing the court will hear from the petitioner and the responding party, the respondent, along with any other witnesses. The court will determine whether a permanent injunction is necessary. The court will look to whether there was an act of domestic violence committed on the petitioner by the respondent or whether the petitioner has a reasonable fear that an act of domestic violence is imminent if the court does not enter a permanent injunction. In entering an injunction the judge will establish the terms of the injunction and how long the injunction will be in effect.
Although the epidemic of domestic violence is extremely serious and should never be taken lightly, unfortunately, there are instances where the injunction process itself is abused. When a person uses an injunction to gain leverage in a dissolution proceeding, the rights of the accused must be protected. The consequences of having a domestic violence injunction entered against you can be severe and permanent. Whether you are seeking an injunction or defending yourself against a petition for an injunction, experienced and strong representation is key to protecting your rights. Call our office today to get our experienced team of family law lawyers on your side 941-365-7171.
The 12th Judicial Circuit of Florida has compiled a valuable set of resources and information on its website which can be accessed through the following link: