Repeat Violence

While an injunction for protection is commonly associated with domestic violence cases, not all victims had domestic relationships with their alleged attackers. In such cases, people may be able to file petitions for injunctions for protection against repeat violence.

Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(b) defines repeat violence as "two incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, one of which must have been within six months of the filing of the petition, which are directed against the petitioner or the petitioner's immediate family member." The person filing the petition is the petitioner, and the person who protection is being sought from is the respondent, and temporary injunctions may be issued without prior notice the respondents.

But after the respondent is served with the temporary order, the respondent is entitled to notice of the time and date of the return hearing so that the respondent can testify, cross-examine the petitioner about the allegation, call additional witnesses, or present evidence.

Attorney for Repeat Violence Arrests in West Palm Beach, FL

If you have been served notice about an injunction for protection against repeat violence being sought against you or you allegedly violated an injunction for protection against repeat violence in South Florida, it is in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel.

Meltzer & Bell, P.A. defends clients facing domestic violence charges in communities all over Palm Beach County, Miami-Dade County, and Broward County, such as Greenacres, Lake Worth, Royal Palm Beach, Riviera Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, and several others.

Our criminal defense lawyers in West Palm Beach, FL, Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell, can fight to protect your rights and help you achieve the most favorable possible outcome to your case.

Call (561) 557-8686 today to have our attorneys review your case and discuss all of your legal options during a free, confidential consultation.


Palm Beach County Repeat Violence Information Center

  • Who can seek a petition for an injunction for protection against repeat violence?
  • What are the punishments for violating an injunction for protection against repeat violence?
  • Where can I find more information about repeat violence in West Palm Beach?

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Injunctions for Protection Against Repeat Violence in Florida

Repeat violence is defined as "two incidents of violence or stalking." Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(a) defines violence as any of the following acts committed by a person against another person:

  • Sexual assault;
  • Stalking;
  • Aggravated stalking;
  • Kidnapping;
  • False imprisonment; or
  • Any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death.

Under Florida Statute § 784.048(2), a person commits the offense of stalking if he or she "willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person."

A person can file a petition for an injunction for protection against repeat violence if he or she or a member of his or her immediate family is a victim of repeat violence and an immediate and present danger of repeat violence to that person or his or her family exists.

Under Florida Statute § 784.046(5), a court is directed to set a hearing to be held at the earliest possible time once a petition has been filed. If a judge is convinced by the facts contained in the petition that the petitioner or a member of his or her immediate family is a victim of repeat violence and that an immediate and present danger of repeat violence exists, he or she will sign a temporary injunction (also referred to as an ex parte order) for protection against repeat violence.

A temporary injunction takes effect immediately after a copy is served to the respondent, and it remains in effect until a full hearing can be held or it will be in effect for 15 days, whichever comes first. At the full hearing on the petition for a protective order both parties are afforded the opportunity to present evidence to the court.


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Repeat Violence Injunction Violation Penalties in Florida

When a person violates an injunction for protection against repeat violence, he or she may be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. If the alleged offender has two or more prior convictions for violating an injunction or foreign protection order, a subsequent violation is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.

Under Florida Statute § 784.047(1), a person willfully violates an injunction for protection against repeat violence by:

  • Refusing to vacate the dwelling that the parties share;
  • Going to, or being within 500 feet of, the petitioner's residence, school, place of employment, or a specified place regularly frequented by the petitioner and any named family or household member;
  • Committing an act of repeat violence, sexual violence, or dating violence against the petitioner;
  • Committing any other violation of the injunction through an intentional unlawful threat, word, or act to do violence to the petitioner;
  • Telephoning, contacting, or otherwise communicating with the petitioner directly or indirectly unless the injunction specifically allows indirect contact through a third party;
  • Knowingly and intentionally coming within 100 feet of the petitioner’s motor vehicle, whether or not that vehicle is occupied;
  • Defacing or destroying the petitioner’s personal property, including the petitioner’s motor vehicle; or
  • Refusing to surrender firearms or ammunition if ordered to do so by the court.

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Repeat Violence Resources in Florida

Domestic Violence/Repeat Violence | Clerk & Comptroller, Palm Beach County — The Domestic Violence Department assists petitioners in filing for Injunctions for Protection Against Repeat Violence. Visit this website to learn more about repeat violence and what to bring when filing a complaint. You can also access free online forms.

Clerk & Comptroller, Palm Beach County
205 North Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
(561) 355-2996

Repeat Violence Checklist | Florida Courts — View a checklist relating to Injunctions for Protection Against Repeat Violence. The document details who has standing to file for such injunctions as well as the requirements. You can also learn more about the relief that may be offered by temporary and final injunctions.


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Find a Repeat Violence Defense Lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL

Were you recently arrested for violating a repeat violence injunction or were you served notice of a repeat violence injunction being sought against you in South Florida? You will want to contact Meltzer & Bell, P.A. as soon as possible.

The repeat violence statute—section 784.046, Florida Statutes— defines repeat violence as two incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, one of which must have been within 6 months of the filing of the petition, which are directed against the petitioner or the petitioner's immediate family member.

As explained in Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(b), an injunction for protection against repeat violence requires a petitioner to show evidence of two incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, which are directed against the petitioner or the petitioner's immediate family member. The statute defines “violence” as any crimes listed in Florida Statutes. § 784.046(1)(a), including any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, or false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death, by a person against any other person.

Our attorneys are experienced criminal defense attorneys in West Palm Beach who represent individuals in Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Wellington, Jupiter, and many surrounding areas of Broward County, Palm Beach County, and Miami-Dade County.

You can have our lawyers provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case when you call (561) 557-8686 or complete an online form to set up a free initial consultation.




This article was last updated on Friday, April 6, 2018.

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