An injunction, often called a “protective order” and “restraining order”, is a document signed by a judge that puts protective measures in place to try to keep an individual safe. It is important to remember that the piece of paper itself doesn’t prevent harm, and you should remember to call 911 if you believe you are in imminent danger of physical violence or if it has already occurred.
Injunctions set certain guidelines that will allow for criminal punishment if the offender violates the injunction. A violation of an injunction is a first degree misdemeanor in Florida, which means it is punishable by up to a $1,000 fine, a year in jail and/or up to 12 months of probation, or a combination thereof.
Under certain circumstances, such as aggravated stalking, you can possibly be charged with a felony and face higher maximum punishments. There are five types of injunctions in Florida:
- Repeat Violence
- Dating Violence
- Sexual Violence
- Domestic Violence
How Do I Get an Injunction?
All injunctions start by filing a petition with the court. A judge then reviews the petition and can either deny the injunction outright, deny it but set it for a hearing, or issue a temporary injunction and set it for a hearing.
The respondent will be served, usually by a law enforcement officer. The hearing will then take place, usually within a very short period of time. After the hearing, the judge may deny the injunction, issue a temporary injunction, or issue a permanent injunction.
Why Do I Need an Attorney?
Our experienced attorneys are able to assist petitioners in completing the petition, preparing for the hearing, and by representing you at the hearing. There are key differences in the types of injunctions that may change how you file the petition, as well as the information that is needed to provide the best opportunity for success. We can review your situation and ensure your petition is properly filed.
We also represent the respondent’s to injunctions, including the criminal stage if you are accused of violating an injunction and are facing prosecution. Our understanding, knowledge of the law, and ability to see both sides of the legal issue allow us to provide top-notch legal representation to all our clients.
Call (239) 970-6844 to set up your free consultation with our team of lawyers in Fort Myers.