When a person stands accused of domestic violence, their whole world is turned upside down. That’s because one moment they may have been having a heated argument with their spouse or significant other in their home, and the next moment, they may find themselves in handcuffs being taken to the local police station.
In fact, the consequences of a domestic violence arrest can be felt almost immediately, as a person could see their personal and professional reputation harmed, and even be hit with an order for protection against domestic violence.
While this may seem hard to believe, Florida law allows victims of domestic violence or those who have reasonable cause to believe that they will become a victim of domestic violence to seek what is known as a temporary injunction.
If granted, a temporary injunction may subject the respondent — meaning the person against whom it is issued — to any of the following conditions:
- Prohibit them from engaging in any acts that could be classified as domestic violence
- Order them to vacate the petitioner’s residence, or relinquish use and possession of a shared dwelling
- Mandate that they provide temporary financial support for any minor children or the petitioner until the expiration of the injunction or the entry of a civil support order
- Require them to undertake counseling, treatment or intervention
- Subject them to any other conditions believed necessary to protect the petitioner
It’s important for those who find themselves in these situations to understand that a temporary injunction will be issued whenever the judge finds there to be “an immediate and present danger of domestic violence,” and that the hearing will be held relatively quickly after a motion is filed. Indeed, the respondent’s presence is not required at the hearing, and the fact that they may have moved out of the household of their own volition will have no bearing on whether it moves forward.
We’ll continue discussing this issue in our next post, examining some of the penalties that can be handed down for violating the terms of a temporary injunction.
If you’ve been charged with domestic violence, it’s imperative to consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible as your freedom, your future and your reputation are at stake.