Violation of Injunction
An injunction for protection is more commonly known as a protection order or restraining order, but it is essential to keep in mind that an injunction is an official court order. The parties named in the injunction are expected to comply with all conditions that the court establishes, and any violation of an injunction can result in criminal and civil penalties.
Often, a restraining order violation occurs because by happenstance or accident. Depending on the terms of the protective order, a person could easily violate an order that prohibits an individual from traveling to places that he or she goes frequently or out of habit.
Any person who is accused of violating an injunction for protection can face possible imprisonment and fines if convicted.
Lawyer for Violation of Injunction Arrests in West Palm Beach, FL
If you were recently arrested for allegedly violating a protection order in South Florida, it would be in your best interest to not say anything to authorities until you have legal representation.
Meltzer & Bell, P.A. aggressively defends clients accused of domestic violence crimes in Jupiter, Palm Beach Gardens, Royal Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Delray Beach, and many surrounding areas of Broward County, Palm Beach County, and Miami-Dade County.
West Palm Beach criminal defense attorneys Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell can fight to possibly have your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. You can have our lawyers provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call (561) 557-8686 to receive a free initial consultation.
Palm Beach County Injunction Violation Information Center
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Types of Injunction Violations in Florida
Florida has five different kinds of injunctions for protection. Different types of injunctions that people may be accused of violating include:
- Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence — Florida Statute § 741.28(2) defines domestic violence as "any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member." A family or household member is defined under Florida Statute § 741.28(3) as meaning "spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married."
- Injunction for Protection Against Stalking — Florida Statute § 784.048(2) establishes that a person commits the offense of stalking if he or she willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person. The term “harass” is defined under Florida Statute § 784.048(1)(a) as engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose. Florida Statute § 784.048(1)(d) defines cyberstalk as "to engage in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose."
- Injunction 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." Violence is defined under Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(a) as meaning "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."
- Injunction for Protection Against Sexual Violence — Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(c) defines sexual violence as any one incident—regardless of whether criminal charges based on the incident were filed, reduced, or dismissed by the state attorney—of sexual battery; a lewd or lascivious act committed upon or in the presence of a person younger than 16 years of age; luring or enticing a child; sexual performance by a child; or any other forcible felony wherein a sexual act is committed or attempted.
- Injunction for Protection Against Dating Violence — Florida Statute § 784.046(1)(d) defines dating violence as "violence between individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature." The same statute establishes that the existence of such a relationship will be determined based on the following factors:
- A dating relationship must have existed within the past six months;
- the nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties; and
- the frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship.
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Violation of Injunction Penalties in West Palm Beach
A person willfully violates an injunction for protection by doing any of the following actions prohibited under Florida Statute § 741.31(4)(a) and Florida Statute § 784.0487(4)(a):
- 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 domestic 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.
Violating an injunction of protection is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. If an alleged offender has two or more prior convictions for violation of an injunction or foreign protection order, a subsequent violation of any injunction or foreign protection order against the same victim is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
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Florida Violation of Injunction Resources
Florida's Domestic Violence Benchbook | Florida Courts — Florida’s domestic violence benchbook was developed by the Office of the State Courts Administrator (OSCA), Office of Court Improvement (OCI), to address the highly litigated legal issues in domestic violence cases. You can use this handbook to find more information about the domestic violence injunction case process and the jurisdiction of domestic violence courts, the issues associated with each stage, and protocol for domestic violence injunction hearings. The handbook also compares injunctions under Chapter 39 and Chapter 741 of the Florida Statutes.
Florida Injunctions for Protection | Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence (FCADV) — FCADV is the professional association for Florida's 42 domestic violence centers. Visit this section of the FCADV website to access videos providing an overview of injunctions for protection in Florida and the hearing process. You can also access statistics and various publications.
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Find an Injunction Violation Defense Attorney in West Palm Beach, FL
Were you arrested for allegedly violating a restraining order in South Florida? Do not say anything to authorities until you have first contacted Meltzer & Bell, P.A..
Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell are experienced criminal defense lawyers in West Palm Beach who represent individuals in communities throughout Palm Beach County, Broward County, and Miami-Dade County, including Lake Worth, Riviera Beach, Wellington, Boynton Beach, Greenacres, and many others.
Call (561) 557-8686 or submit an online form to have our attorneys review your case and help you understand all of your legal options during a free, confidential consultation.
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