Domestic Violence in Florida
1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men in the United Sates have been the victim of domestic violence (National Coalition Against Domestic Violence). The truth about domestic violence is that it can happen to men and women before, during and after a relationship or marriage. If you have been the victim of domestic violence in Florida, do not hesitate to act. The courteous lawyers at LaFrance Law are here to help you determine the best course of action for you and your family when an act of domestic violence has taken place.
Domestic violence is defined in Florida Statute, Section 741.28 as any assault, battery or criminal offense that results in the physical injury of one family member by another. It is not necessary for the individuals involved to be married or blood-related to be considered family; living together as a family unit or having children outside of marriage is also considered a family in Florida. Even if you are divorced and have been abused by your ex-spouse, the action is still considered an act of domestic violence.
Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence
If you have been the victim of domestic violence or feel that you are in imminent danger you can file an Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence, which is also referred to as a restraining order. An injunction is essentially a court order designed to prevent your abuser from coming in further contact with you as well as other requirements the Florida courts may see fit such as a temporary child support order or requiring the abuser to leave your home.
An injunction petition must be filed by the victim and it is not uncommon for a judge to grant a temporary injunction based on your sworn testimony. A temporary injunction is used to provide protection before a formal hearing can occur between both parties. Temporary injunctions have a maximum time frame of 15 days and the court appearance will be scheduled to occur within that period.
During the formal hearing, the victim is given the opportunity to provide evidence of abuse or that he/she is in imminent danger of abuse. The alleged abuser will be given the same opportunity to defend themselves. During the full hearing, it will be decided if a final injunction is appropriate. A final injunction may provide the victim with more protections and may be permanent or be ordered for a long-term period of time.
Whether you have been the victim of domestic violence or feel you are in danger, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. The attorneys at LaFrance Law have the knowledge and experience to guide you through this process. Fill out the form on the sidebar or call us at 813-930-5542 for a consultation.