Oviedo Domestic Violence Attorney
If physical or emotional violence threatens the health, safety, or welfare of someone in your family, judicial relief is available. Contrary to popular myth, a protective order is not just a piece of paper. This government document gives schools, daycares, and other entities official notice that there is a problem. Additionally, some emergency responders might not react too quickly to domestic disturbance calls, but if a protective order violation is involved, reaction times are normally much swifter.
Additionally, at least in most cases, there are two sides to the story. The alleged victim’s version of events is not necessarily entirely accurate. Both alleged victims and alleged abusers have legal rights in court.
The compassionate Oviedo domestic violence attorneys at the Troum Law Firm understand the procedural and evidentiary complexities in these cases. We help you avoid technicalities and ensure that the judge gets the most accurate information possible about a particular event. Then, we help you make sense of the court order so you can make the best possible choices for you and your family.
Generally, when police officers respond to domestic disturbance calls, they are legally required to give victims information about the criminal restraining order process. This process has basically three different levels:
- Ex Parte: Seminole County judges have the power to issue restraining orders based solely on the alleged victim’s affidavit. Normally, this affidavit must detail domestic violence which immediately threatens a family member. In most cases, relief is limited, but in many cases, the available relief is much broader.
- Temporary: About two weeks after the judge issues or denies an ex parte application, there is a full hearing on the matter. At that hearing, both parties could have legal advocates, so the outcome could be much different.
- Permanent: At a subsequent hearing, the judge may renew the protective order for up to two years. In addition to prohibiting domestic violence, protective orders usually include injunctive relief, such as a no-contact order.
Florida law protects a number of relationships. Essentially, anyone related by blood or marriage could be a family member. Other protected classes include current or former roommates and current or former dating partners.
The civil restraining order process is a bit different. Frequently, judges include the aforementioned injunctive relief in divorce or other paperwork, even if there is limited evidence to support such allegations. However, because these orders are civil as opposed to criminal, enforcement options might be limited.
Restraining Order Defenses
Whether you believe the judge justifiably issued the order or not, compliance is mandatory. At that point, moral guilt or innocence is largely irrelevant. The law is the law. And, violating any restraining order is a serious offense in and of itself.
In both criminal and civil court, the alleged victim has the burden of proof. So, lack of evidence is often an effective defense. Unless the alleged victim’s testimony is completely airtight, that testimony alone might not be enough to support a restraining order application.
The parallel proceeding defense is also available with regard to criminal protective orders. No one knows how many alleged victims file such complaints in order to gain the upper hand in a child custody or other dispute, but these things do happen.
Count on an Experienced Lawyer
The best restraining order outcomes are the ones that fully consider both sides of the story. For a consultation with an experienced family law attorney in Oviedo, contact The Troum Law Firm, P.A. We routinely handle matters in Seminole County and nearby jurisdictions.