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Do You Have A Domestic Violence Injunction Against You?

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Domestic violence is seen as a very serious offense in Florida, and if someone has been the victim of a domestic violence incident, the legal system is set up to protect them in the shape of an injunction – also known as a restraining order. Long-term injunctions are only granted after hearings, where both parties are able to present their side of the story, but sometimes, a temporary injunction can happen very quickly – often without your knowledge. It is important to understand your options if you find you have a domestic violence injunction (DVI) against you.

Intended To Protect Victims

Injunctions are documents issued by courts that compel a specific person to do (or not do) a specific action. They can be issued against people or entities, but in a domestic violence context, an injunction is usually issued against an alleged abuser, requiring them to stay away from their alleged victim. Each Florida county or district has an individual procedure for a victim to seek a temporary injunction.

In general, a person who has either been the victim of domestic violence as defined by Florida law, or has “reasonable cause” to believe that they are “in imminent danger” of becoming a victim of domestic violence, has the right to seek a DVI, though they are not always granted. If the injunction is granted, it will be a temporary order, intended to immediately protect a victim from someone who wants to do them harm. A permanent injunction may come later, after a hearing.

Do Not Breach The Order

If you are served with a copy of a DVI, the most important thing to know about it is that the penalties for breaching it – no matter how badly you may want to “talk things out” with your alleged victim – are serious. In theory, violating a DVI is a civil tort, but in some cases you can and will be charged with a criminal offense. Being convicted can result in jail time, plus having to pay fines and court costs. An injunction is meant to be a hard and fast barrier against approaching your alleged victim – breaking it will be a problem.

A better way to focus your energies is to prepare for hearings if a permanent injunction is on the horizon. A permanent DVI cannot be issued without giving you a chance to defend yourself, and it is a good idea to work with your attorney to ensure that you have the best chance possible to avoid having a permanent injunction against you. While a hearing of this kind is not strictly relevant to your criminal case, it can matter in that both sides can get a preview of the evidence to be presented in court.

Contact A West Palm Beach Domestic Violence Attorney

Charges for domestic violence should be taken extremely seriously; a conviction will stay on your criminal record and cannot be expunged. An injunction against you is not relevant to guilt or innocence, but it can still affect your case in other ways. A West Palm Beach criminal defense attorney from Perlet & Shiner, P.A. can help to protect your rights during what can be a frightening time in life. Call our office today to speak to an attorney.

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