Implications of a Permanent Domestic Violence Injunction in Florida
If someone has accused you of domestic violence, you may be shocked to find out that some legal proceedings have already taken place without your knowledge. This is because Florida’s statute on domestic violence allows a person to obtain an injunction against you, even when you weren’t provided with official notice. However, this initial order isn’t the end of the matter. You’ll get an opportunity to defend against the allegations in court, and it’s important to make the most of it. The injunction could become permanent, so it’s wise to retain a Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorney to represent your interests. You may also benefit from reviewing some critical information about these cases.
Temporary Domestic Violence Injunctions: The court proceeding you didn’t get notice about was likely filed by your accuser through a petition for a temporary injunction. This order is called ex parte because it was entered without you being present to contest the allegations of domestic violence. The injunction may include provisions that:
- Prohibit you from contacting your accuser;
- Instruct you to move out of the home you share with the accuser;
- Order you to stay away from places the accuser frequents;
- Prevent you from seeing your children; and,
- Other orders depending on your specific circumstances.
The temporary injunction will also include information on the next court date, since you must receive notice of every hearing after the ex parte order.
How a Temporary Injunction Can Become Permanent: The first court order in a domestic violence case can only last for 15 days. Because an injunction affects your civil rights, it can never become permanent until you have an opportunity to appear in court and present your side of the case. This next court date will usually be scheduled around the time that the temporary order expires.
Appearing at this proceeding is absolutely essential. The point of the hearing is to determine whether the temporary injunction should become permanent – i.e., whether there’s enough evidence to convince the judge that you should be forever barred from engaging in certain types of conduct. You will have the chance to present testimony and evidence in your favor, which is why it’s also absolutely essential to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side.
Consequences of a Permanent Domestic Violence Injunction: If you fail to convince the court you’re not a threat, the judge will likely make certain terms and conditions permanent. The injunction may include:
- No contact or supervised-only visitation with your children;
- An eviction from your residence;
- An order preventing you from possessing firearms;
- Requirements regarding anger management courses, mental health counseling, a substance abuse program, or parenting classes; and,
- Many other provisions.
Consult with a Florida Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer Today
Though this summary of domestic violence injunctions may be helpful, it’s no substitute for experienced legal representation. To learn more about your rights, please contact the Fort Lauderdale office of criminal defense attorney Kevin J. Kulik. We can schedule a confidential consultation to review your situation and determine a defense strategy.