A protective order gives an individual or entity a protection from someone. It is important to understand the rules and regulations regarding protective orders in a domestic violence case, because violations can come with ample further serious consequences.
If you have been served with this type of document, retain the services of a Ft. Lauderdale protective order lawyer. A skilled domestic violence attorney can protect your legal rights and fight for you.
What a Protective Order Entails
The court may order no direct or indirect contact with the petitioner, restrict the respondent’s movements within a certain radius from the petitioner’s place of residence or employment, and order that there be no violence. When it is known that the respondent owns or possesses any firearms, the court can order the surrender of those firearms. The court can order the respondent to enter a batterer’s intervention program or any other treatment deemed necessary, address issues of custody and visitation with respect to minor children, child support, and alimony. Because being served a protective order can be unsettling, it is important to speak with a Ft. Lauderdale attorney in these situations.
Usually, when somebody seeks this type of relief, it is called an injunction. A general injunction has particular rules and requirements with respect to whether the person can obtain the injunction in court. First, an individual seeking a standard injunction must exhaust all other remedies before going to the court and requesting an injunction. Secondly, the individual must show that there will be irreparable harm.
Florida has a specialized statute regarding a petition for injunction for protection against domestic violence under Chapter 741.30. The courts allow individuals to circumvent the general rules as they relate to injunctions and give individuals a specialized remedy to file an injunction for protection from domestic violence.
Process of Issuing a Protective Order
The petitioner must file their paperwork at the courthouse and swear under oath that they are an alleged victim of domestic violence. The court considers the individual’s sworn statement along with any police reports or witness statements to make a determination is to whether they were the alleged victim of domestic violence.
Protective orders are usually issued ex parte which means in a non-adversarial setting by a judge reviewing the petition without the other side having the opportunity to be present initially. The judge finds that the facts are sufficient to grant the order and they will issue a temporary injunction. The judge sets a later hearing within 15 days to determine whether the temporary injunction should become a final injunction or final protective order.
The person who is the subject of the injunction entered against them must be served. At the hearing, a Ft. Lauderdale lawyer can help the subject of the protective order have an opportunity to present their case and the judge determines whether the temporary restraining order is converted into a permanent restraining order. When the court is unable to obtain service of process on the respondent the court may, with good cause, continue the temporary restraining order and attempt to obtain service on the respondent so that a final hearing can be held.
Modifying an Order
A protection order can be changed or extended at any time with the consent of the court and by way of a hearing before the judge who issued the order or is in charge of that case at that particular time. Either party can file a motion seeking a vacation or modification of the protective order. A Ft. Lauderdale lawyer could help their client file a motion for modification or vacation of the protective order if necessary. The court will hold a hearing to determine whether to grant the request. If the parties agree to a modification or termination, the court considers that as well.
Impact of a Protective Order on a Criminal Case
When an individual has a criminal case pending and there is an action or petition for a protection order, anything that is said at a civil hearing can be used against an individual in a criminal case. A person should proceed with caution in a civil hearing for a protective order and if they testify, their testimony can be used against them in a criminal case. The two cases act independently of one another with two different standards of proof.
If somebody is arrested on a criminal domestic violence charge as a condition of their release, they usually cannot have any contact with the alleged victim in the case. Having a request for a protective order after the criminal case begins is a duplicate layer of protection. It does not necessarily hurt the individual but reinforces what should already be in place after an arrest on a domestic violence charge. A lawyer in Ft. Lauderdale could determine how a protective order may impact an individual’s potential criminal case.
Speak with a Ft. Lauderdale Protective Order Lawyer
Protective orders can be complicated and the consequences for violating an order can have serious consequences for those facing domestic violence charges. A Ft. Lauderdale protective order lawyer can be instrumental to your case. In certain instances, a protection order can result in a person having to leave their home, and having to avoid contact with their children. An attorney can fight to protect your rights and work to ensure you are not subjected to unnecessarily harsh conditions.