What Constitutes a Restraining Order?
Sometimes legal protection against the actions of another individual is needed. A restraining order in Sarasota, Bradenton, and Venice, Florida offers protection for victims of domestic violence, physical attacks, verbal threats of imminent serious violence, stalking, and other such acts of aggression from another person. The Law Offices of Matthew Z. Martell, P.A. understands the need to keep yourself and your family protected and is ready to help you apply for a restraining order in Sarasota, Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch, and Venice, Florida.
What is a restraining order?
It’s an order of protection issued by the courts to help protect an individual from violence. Needing a restraining order in Florida often stems from one person needing protection from another person because they reasonably and genuinely fear for their personal safety. Common reasons a person may obtain an order against another include being a victim of domestic violence, physical abuse, death threats, stalking, verbal harassment with threats of violence, sexual assault, or similar acts of intimidation.
What exactly is a restraining order in a domestic relations case for?
There are different restraining orders for victims of domestic violence, physical abuse, violence, threats of violence, and stalking. A restraining order explicitly protects a person who is in a domestic relationship with their abuser. Domestic relationships include being married, divorced, separated, dating, used to date, in a non-married intimate relationship, registered as domestic partners, living together, or parents of a child.
What qualifies as an act of domestic violence?
An act of domestic violence which will be considered as a qualifying event involves hitting or kicking someone, choking someone, pushing someone, physically wrestling and/or restraining someone against their will, physical harassment, verbal threats of imminent serious violence, and stalking. This abuse needs to be and physical and not emotional, psychological, and verbal unless it involves legitimate imminent threats to beat someone up or kill him or her. For example, name calling, verbal degradation, or making someone feel bad about themselves does not qualify as an act which can be considered as grounds for an order. It is best to speak with a Sarasota, Bradenton, and Venice family attorney law to discuss the situation and determine if your case qualifies for a restraining order.
What are the different types of family law restraining orders?
There are two types of restraining orders associated with domestic relations cases. A restraining order in Sarasota County and Manatee County includes:
Temporary Restraining Order: To obtain a temporary restraining order, the victim goes to the clerk of court and fills out paperwork to allege they are in imminent danger of violence again them. The application must include a statement of facts, a request for relief, and an affidavit. This restraining order petition is sent to the judge “ex parte” without a hearing for review. The judge may then approve a temporary protection order if they believe there is a true need for your immediate physical protection. This temporary order remains in effect until a formal hearing is scheduled which is normally within 14 day of it being issued.
Permanent Restraining Order: After the Respondent is served with your temporary restraining order by sheriff’s office, he or she cannot normally come within at least 500 feet of your home or where you work. He or she also cannot speak to you or communicate with you in any manner unless you have kids together. In such cases, he, she or another third party can normally schedule temporary timesharing only. He or she is not allowed to physically touch you, threaten you, or stalk you. If he or she does, then he/she will be arrested, and criminal prosecuted for violation of the restraining order. He or she also has to surrender any firearms and ammunition to the local sheriff’s office.
During the formal hearing that is normally scheduled within 2 weeks of the temporary restraining order, the judge will hear testimony, review evidence, and then may issue a permanent restraining order. Sometimes however, this restraining order is not actually “permanent”, and make be schedule for only a certain period of time such as two years or five years and can be renewed at the end of that period if necessary.
Every permanent restraining order is somewhat different, and therefore it is best to consult an attorney to make sure your case is effectively presented to the judge with all the facts. Once approved, the order legally restrains the other person from communication or coming near you, your children, your pets, or anyone else who lives with you. Additionally, the other person has to move out of the home if he or she lives there and is also ordered not to possess any firearms.
Sometimes the person restrained is also ordered to continue paying specific bills, pay child support, have a certain timesharing schedule with your children, and/or enter into anger management mental health counseling, or drug counseling.
How can a Sarasota family law attorney help?
Hiring a Sarasota, Bradenton, or Venice, Florida family law attorney helps you to file for the appropriate order, draft it, gather evidence to present to the court, and prepare to testify and the permanent restraining order hearing. Then, during the hearing, your attorney will present your case to the judge as well as cross-examine the abuser.
Are you in need of a restraining order Sarasota, Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch, or Venice, Florida? If so, the Law Offices of Matthew Z. Martell is ready and prepared to help get you the protection you need. Call us today at (941) 556-7020 to discuss your situation and learn more about how we can help you.