What happens if I violate a restraining order in Florida?
- February 16th, 2022
- Bruce Denson
- Comments Off on What happens if I violate a restraining order in Florida?
Technically, restraining orders and other injunctions are civil matters. But when there is a violation of an injunction in Florida, it becomes a criminal matter.
It is strongly advised to do whatever you can to not violate a domestic violence injunction because severe penalties can be imposed upon you that can affect your future and your freedom. A criminal defense attorney can help if you face a petition for an injunction in Florida. And we can help if you are faced with a charge of violating an injunction.
What are the penalties for violating a domestic violence restraining order in Florida?
When someone violates a civil injunction, such as a protective order or domestic violence injunction, it is considered a criminal misdemeanor offense in the criminal justice system. The injunction has been put in place to protect the alleged victim. Even if you do not think it is necessary, you can still face severe penalties if the order is violated.
When there is a violation of a domestic violence injunction in Florida, the individual can face up to a $1,000 fine and up to one year in jail. In addition, if there are repeated violations, the penalties increase.
Individuals can have multiple injunctions imposed upon them at the same time.
The state has several common types of injunctions, including:
- Domestic Violence Injunction,
- Sexual Violence Injunction,
- Repeat Violence Injunction,
- Restraining Order, and
- Protective Order.
The basic intention of all of these injunctions is to restrict the ability to contact another person and prevent an individual from committing a violent crime.
Even if you come into contact with the person accidentally, such as arriving at a gas station, supermarket, or shopping mall at the same time — you can still be arrested. The injunction is still valid even if the individual who placed the injunction on you took it upon themselves to contact you. So be aware and do not put yourself in a bad situation. Do not go to places you know the other person frequents and if you happen to cross paths, turn around and leave immediately. You are not going to win on the scene with an argument that you were there first. However, you may have a defense later to show the contact was unintentional and you left immediately.
Due to the severe penalties and all the potential ways that a violation of a domestic violence injunction in Florida can occur, it is highly recommended to have your own lawyer to keep the situation from advancing to a criminal matter that can affect your freedom, your job, your financial future, among other areas of your life.
The Denson Firm provides expert legal counsel to individuals facing injunctions.
How long will my domestic violence restraining order last?
The length will depend on whether the domestic violence restraining order is temporary or not. Initially, it is a temporary order signed by the judge, which can be in place until a hearing can be set and for the final injunction and individuals involved to state their case with their lawyers.
When the judge rules on a final injunction, there may be no expiration date. Meaning, you would have to permanently follow the parameters of the injunction or face criminal charges unless you take action to either modify or potentially dissolve the order in a court of law. Alternatively, the judge can limit the time it is in place.
Can I challenge my Florida domestic violence injunction?
If you have received a temporary injunction, the best strategy is to contest the injunction at the hearing. During the time frame of the temporary order, you should consult with an attorney to be your advocate at the hearing. There are a variety of defenses that can be used depending on your situation to achieve the ultimate goal of getting the Injunction for Protection Against Violence dismissed or limited in time and scope.
The details of your case are crucial to determine the most effective defense. They will utilize evidence, your statement, and potential witnesses to prove that the injunction should be dismissed. During the presentation of your case, your attorney works to prove that the claims made by the petitioner were either exaggerated, misrepresented, or false.
Should I hire a criminal defense attorney in Florida?
There are multiple reasons why individuals facing an injunction should hire a criminal defense attorney. Injunctions can severely affect how an individual lives their life, including restrictions on freedom of movement and the ability to see their children.
If a domestic violence injunction violation in Florida occurs, you can face criminal charges, financial penalties, and even up to a year of imprisonment. An attorney can lead as the point of contact to prevent violations and represent your interests in front of the judge to work to grant modifications to the injunction or get the injunction dissolved altogether.
With the extreme short-term – and potentially long-term consequences you could be facing, having a criminal defense attorney on your side is critical to getting the best outcome when you have an injunction against you in the State of Florida.
Contact The Denson Firm today to set up a free consultation.