Injunction Lawyers in Naples Florida (FL)
Temporary injunctions, which are sometimes referred to as “restraining orders,” are granted by a judge that provide an added layer of protection from harm, contact, or wrongdoing for the person applying for the order. In legal terms, the person who applies for the injunction is called the petitioner. The party defending against the injunction is referred to as the respondent. In some instances, each party could be both petitioner and respondent. Courts refer to those applications as “cross-complaints” or “cross-motion.” Being named a respondent in a Naples complaint about injunctive relief is an increasingly serious criminal matter that can have extensive negative ramifications for the respondent’s future. Accordingly, seeking highly competent and experienced counsel will help avoid the negative ramifications of being served with a restraining order.
When a petitioner asks the court to issue an order for injunctive relief, the court will determine whether the respondent should no contact the petitioner and not abuse that individual as well. Judges grant preliminary restraining orders or temporary injunctions regularly. The judges base those decisions on evidence provided by the petitioner that could be exaggerated, misrepresented, or utterly false. In short, many people, men and women alike, use temporary injunctions as a way to get back at the respondent for wrongs committed during the relationship. Having a Naples attorney with you during the hearing will help protect you and your children from the restrictions imposed by a court on your life, liberty, and freedoms to associate.
Many times, petitions for injunctions for protection accompany criminal charges. You need an attorney to battle for you and protect your rights in the criminal case and the injunction case because the two matters, even though a petition for an injunction for protection is a civil order, any statements you make in the civil case in defense of the preliminary injunction could be used against you in the criminal case. A seasoned and competent Naples criminal defense attorney will vigorously protect your rights in your criminal case and the hearing for the injunction for protection.
Severe Potential Consequences for Violating an Injunction for Protection in Naples, Florida (FL)
A violation of an injunctive order for protection may authorize the police to charge the alleged violator with a crime. Typically, a conviction for a willful and knowing violation of an injunction for protection from violence or other injunction carries a one-year jail sentence as a first-degree misdemeanor. However, repeated offenses or offenses that are tied to other crimes could raise the stakes considerably. Depending on the type of offense, the court may order the person convicted of the crime to serve a five-year prison sentence as a third-degree felony.
Types of Injunctive Relief in Naples, Florida
Domestic Violence Injunctions in Naples, Florida
A judge can issue an injunction ordering the respondent to cease behavior that may be deemed to be domestic violence. Domestic violence is a term defined specifically under Florida law. In other words, domestic violence is a particular category of acts that occur between two people who meet Florida’s definition of a domestic relationship. Thus, an act of domestic violence is one of any number of criminal acts such as a battery, assault, saluting, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or another criminal action that could or does cause physical injury or death. The violent act must be directed to a family member or a household member or satisfy other conditions. A threat to commit any of these acts qualifies for injunctive relief under the statute. Furthermore, the judge could issue this injunction if the petitioner is in fear of becoming a victim of domestic violence.
The second prong of domestic violence under Florida law refers to the nature of the relationship. To qualify for a protective injunction against domestic violence, the petitioner and respondent must be one of the enumerated relationships to qualify for the order. Those particular relationships include people who currently or have lived together, or they have a child together. The petitioner and respondent need not reside together to qualify for a domestic violence injunction if they have a child in common.
Injunctions to Protect Against Dating Violence
Dating violence is akin to domestic violence. An injunction to prevent dating violence would seek to prevent any assaultive acts potentially launched against the petitioner by the respondent. An injunction against domestic violence will only issue to protect one dating or romantic partner from another. People who are currently dating or in an intimate relationship can apply for this injunction. However, if the relationship has ended, then the judge could grant the restraining order as long as the parties were involved in a dating relationship for six months before one of the romantic partners applies for the injunction.
Injunctions to Prevent Stalking
In Florida, stalking is behavior that is either malicious, intentional, or repetitive harassment, or the habitual following of another person. A stalking victim can file a petition for an injunction against stalking. The victim of stalking can also ask the police to file criminal charges for stalking as well, provided that the individual could be identified. Most stalking incidents are not strangers stalking strangers — although that is possible —most stalking cases involve people known to each other. The deviation of stalking also includes cyberstalking. Cyberstalking in Florida is defined as threats or other illegitimate communications without any legitimate purpose that causes a person severe emotional distress. Electronic communications encompass a wide range of interpersonal communication made through email, text message, or via social media direct messenger platforms.
An injunction to Prevent Repeat Violence
Two instances of stalking or an act of violence allegedly committed by the respondent against the petitioner allow a court to enjoin the respondent from committing additional acts of violence. The so-called repeat violence injunction could be granted by the judge if one of the two required acts happened within the six months before the petitioner filed. The acts of stalking or violence must be alleged by the petitioner to have occurred against a member of his or her family.
An injunction to Prevent Sexual Violence
A judge may grant an injunction to prevent sexual violence even if a companion criminal case is dismissed or even if the police never charged the respondent, although this type of injunction often arises in connection with a sexual assault investigation. The petitioner must allege that the respondent committed an act of lewdness against a child or committed or attempted to commit a sex act as a component of a forcible felony.
A person who violates an injunction for protection in Naples could face stiff criminal penalties and other sanctions.
A judge sitting in a civil trial session, rather than a criminal judge, hears petitions for restraining orders. Violating a judge’s order in a civil case has substantial ramifications. A judge sitting in a civil court has the authority to issue an order of contempt for violating an order of the court. Additionally, the state’s attorney could file charges against the person who violated the court order. At a minimum, the offender faces one year of incarceration in the county jail for violating an injunction for protective relief. The crime could become significantly more serious if the respondent to the injunction possesses or purchases a firearm, rifle, shotgun, or ammunition.
An injunction for a protective order will appear on one’s court record in Florida. The information might also appear on other public record searches as well. Therefore, any person who can obtain a copy of the individual’s record might see that he or she is subject to a restraining order. The mere appearance of the injunction on the person’s record could hamper that individual’s ability to find a job, or retain work, or hinder the person’s ability to find suitable housing, or even return to the home in which he or she is a part-owner.
The Process of Applying for Injunctive Relief in Collier County, Florida (FL)
The process begins when a person claiming to be aggrieved by or in fear of another person. The person in fear of another person may petition the court by filing the appropriate documents with the court clerk. The petitioner must set out the nature of the relationship if there is one, and describe in detail what the person allegedly did to injure the petitioner or put the petitioner in fear of imminent harm. The judge must be satisfied that there is no alternative to issue the restraining order by a standard of clear and convincing evidence.
The first stage of the process is known as the preliminary injunction or temporary restraining order stage. The judge could grant a temporary injunction without the respondent present, which is called an ex parte hearing, but the court must give the respondent notice that someone is trying to take away his or her liberty, or restrain his or her freedom in a way, and the respondent must have a chance to be heard in opposition to the petition.
The court will set a final hearing date if the judge believes that a temporary restraining order is necessary to protect the status quo. If the judge does not find sufficient to grant the temporary injunction, then the court could dismiss the petition altogether.
The final hearing must be within fifteen days of the date when the judge granted the temporary order. The hearing date could be extended if the parties agree or the judge finds good cause to do so. Both parties have the right to call their witnesses and present evidence in support of their relative positions at the permanent injunction hearing.
Self-Representation Could Be Disastrous
There persists a misconception that people can represent themselves successfully at hearings for injunctions against abuse because the hearing is much less formal than a trial. The rules of evidence do not apply as strictly, and the hearings are typically quick. Numerous folks rationalize that they know the facts better than anyone so they could step in and argue persuasively. However, many people quickly realize that they are in way too deep when it is too late. Even though the hearings a slightly more relaxed than a trial, the judges expect litigants to know and understand the law. Additionally, litigants are expected to comport themselves with the highest level of decorum at all times.
As soon as you learn about the possibility that someone could file a petition for an injunction, contact the aggressive and successful Naples injunction lawyers from Musca Law. Their expertise, understanding of the law, and highly developed skill will help protect you when someone says that they are afraid of you and that without the court stepping in to issue an order of protection, you might hurt them.
How Long Will The Temporary Order Last?
Temporary orders for injunction usually last fifteen days. But, the temporary order will be valid for fifteen days after the alleged offender is released from incarceration if the judge issued the injunction while the respondent was in jail or prison.
How Long Might the Permanent Order Last?
As suggested by its name, a permanent order preventing abuse could last forever. The presumption under Florida law is that the permanent injunction will not expire unless one of the parties successfully petitions the court to rescind, alter, or dissolve the order. The judge could also modify the order to accommodate the parties’ desires while maintaining some level of court control over the respondent.
Living with an Restraining Order is Burdensome
No one ever said that living under the strict constraints of an injunction against abuse was easy. The person subject to the injunction must watch where they are at all times and be careful to whom they speak and about what they speak because a misstep could become a violation of the judge’s order.
Injunctions for protection can become a part of the public record. Therefore, prospective employers could search for public records and find the order. The potential employer might not want to hire someone who was accused of mistreating someone.
Restraining orders have wider implications. The person subject to restraint might lose the opportunity to see and contact one’s family. A judge in the family court might look at the existence of an injunction as a reason to refuse legal custody or visitation rights with the person’s children. The judge might feel that the person who is not subject to a restringing order is the parent who is better suited to care for the children born of the relationship.
Injunctions can negatively affect one’s professional life as well as personal life. A person subject to an injunction might not be allowed to travel to a particular area. If the parties to the protective order work together, then the reputation of the person subject to the order could be severely tarnished at work. Furthermore, the respondent to a restraining order must relinquish all firearms, including rifles and shotguns, to the local police department while the case is ongoing. However, the defense attorney Amy file a motion to reinstate the firearms rights and privileges of the respondent.
Using an Injunction as a Weapon in Naples
It is no secret that people, both women and men, use the power to the courts to their advantage. Not every person who comes before the court and claims to be afraid is being truthful to the court. People find ways to exact revenge on others after a judge grants a restraining order. The petitioner could call the police on the other party and claim a violation of the temporary or permeate injunction even though no violation occurred. The petitioner can try to use the existence of an injunction against abuse to win child custody or prevent that person from developing a relationship with children or other family members. Injunctions are often misused and abused in this fashion with great regulatory. Accordingly, you must have a seasoned Naples injunction defense lawyer with you to fight to protect your rights.
What is the distinction between a restraining order and a Protective Injunction?
Restraining orders are designed to keep the peace for the short term. Conversely, orders for protection against abuse are presumed to be permanent. The terms are used interchangeably. However, the judge will issue the preliminary injunction or restraining order to protect the petitioner in the short term until both parties may be heard at the final hearing.
Possible Penalties for Violating an Order of Injunctions
Violating an injunctive order is a misdemeanor in the first-degree. The maximum penalty for a first-degree misdemeanor in Florida is one year committed to the county jail. Additionally, the judge could charge a fine of up to $1,000.00. Also, the judge could order the offender to complete a period of probation. The judge could order the offender to attend a program on preventing domestic violence or anger management.
Can a Protective Order be Challenged?
Hiring an attorney who is experienced in fighting to protect the rights of people wrongfully accused will help the respondent contest the petitioner’s allegations. Each person who stands to have his or her liberty restricted by court order has a Due Process right to be heard in opposition to the petition. An individual’s Due Process rights are invaluable. Due Process is the right to be notified about the potential adverse action and then to argue why the court should not take the requested action to restrain a person’s liberty.
Contact Musca Law Today to Learn More About Your Legal Rights and Options
Facing the prospects of a stalking injunction can be frightening, as an active injunction can negatively affect your life in several serious ways. When you work a seasoned Naples criminal defense attorney at Musca Law, he or she will help you to challenge a stalking injunction to the fullest extent of the law. Our firm’s attorneys are among The National Trial Lawyers – Top 100 Trial Lawyers, included in the 2012 Florida Super Lawyers® for criminal defense, and boast 10.0 Superb Avvo ratings. Our attorneys are skilled, experienced, tenacious, and relentless when it comes to defending our clients. To learn more about how Musca Law can make a difference for you, call (888) 484-5057 today.