Tampa Injunction Attorney & Restaining Orders

In Florida, there are a variety of protective orders available to individuals seeking an order of protection from the court. The most common types of injunctions are: Domestic Violence, Repeat Violence, Dating Violence and Sexual Violence. Each one of these types have different elements associated with the nature of the allegations involved in the petition for protection that presumably would be filed. Injunctions or restraining orders are a civil remedy in court, whereby a petition seeks a temporary order of protection from the circuit court in the jurisdiction where the allegations took place. Once the temporary injunction is granted, the other party, or the respondent, will be served with a copy of the petition filed, and is ordered to appear before a judge. At the date of the hearing both parties will be provided an opportunity to explain their respective positions to the judge hearing the case. Once all of the testimony and evidence has been presented, the judge presiding will determine if the facts and evidence presented established the basis for granting a permanent injunction.

The Mitcham Law Firm has extensive experience on both sides of the injunction process, including advocating for protection of petitioners, as well as defending respondents, in injunction hearings. A person involved in an injunction hearing does not have a constitutional right to be provided an attorney. The person may decide to hire private counsel, or they may choose to represent themselves in the hearing. However, it is very important for any individual dealing with an injunction matter to either be very prepared to handle it themselves, and address the court competently, or in the alternative, have a qualified attorney assist in the preparation and handling of an injunction matter.

Attorney Matt A.V. Mitcham offers any prospective client dealing with an injunction matter, whether a petitioner or respondent, a free initial consultation to discuss and review the matter, then the client can determine if the Mitcham Law Firm is the right choice to assist them in dealing with the injunction hearing.

 

 

Common Questions and Answers:

What is an injunction?

An injunction is also known as a restraining order and can be granted for Repeat Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence or Sexual Violence. An injunction is a court order preventing contact between two or more individuals. A violation of the injunction can lead to criminal prosecution.

How do I obtain an injunction?

We can help you file an initial petition for injunction for protection. The party filing for the injunction is called the “petitioner”. A sworn statement is submitted to the clerk’s office for review by a County Court Judge. The Judge will determine whether the sworn statement contains sufficient evidence to grant a temporary injunction. We will ensure all documents are in order and help you determine if an injunction is appropriate for you situation. The case will be set for hearing as both parties have the right to be heard in court. If the temporary injunction is granted, the Sheriff’s Office will serve the injunction on the opposing party, known as the “respondent”. The temporary injunction will be accompanied by paperwork advising both parties of the date and time of the hearing. If either party fails to appear, the outcome may be affected to that party’s detriment. In some cases, the Judge may not grant a temporary injunction but will set a hearing to gather more information and determine whether to grant a permanent injunction. We will appear with you for the hearing. We will make arguments to the court on your behalf and cross examine any witnesses on the opposing side. We will stand by you at every stage of the process. The Judge will hear arguments at the hearing to determine whether to issue a permanent injunction.

I have been served with an injunction, what do I do now?

The injunction is set for a hearing where you have the opportunity to address the matter before a Judge. If you simply ignore the injunction hearing, the Judge will likely grant the petitioner’s request for an injunction. You have the right to cross examine the petitioner and all witnesses called to testify. You also have the right to testify and call witnesses who may have relevant testimony to convey to the court. If an injunction is granted against you, some of your constitutional rights may be affected. The court can order you to relinquish all firearms and your freedom of movement may be restricted if a court restricts locations you may go in relation to the petitioner. We can assist you in evaluating the petition of injunction and prepare for the hearing. We will serve as your counsel at the hearing cross examining witnesses and objecting to irrelevant or legally inadmissible testimony. We will also present your case to the court and call witnesses on your behalf who may have relevant testimony to offer. We will make arguments to the court on your behalf protecting your interests and protecting your legal rights.

How long does it last?

An injunction will remain in full force and effect until modified or dissolved by the issuing court. Neither party may change the terms of the injunction without a court order. However, either party may move at any time to modify or dissolve the injunction.

Who can get an injunction?
You may apply for an injunction if you are the victim of Repeat Violence, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence or Sexual Violence. If you have experienced any of these situations, we can help you apply for the appropriate injunction and continue our representation of you through the court proceedings.

What are my rights?

Your constitutional rights apply through the injunction process. You have the right to a hearing before a court prior to the entering of a permanent injunction. You have the right to challenge an injunction already issued by a court. You have the right to cross examine any witnesses against you. All rules of evidence apply to injunction hearings. A court cannot grant an injunction based on hearsay or other irrelevant or legally inadmissible evidence. We will see to it your rights are protected.

What if the injunction is violated?

A violation of an injunction is a first degree misdemeanor. A person found to have violated a civil injunction can face criminal prosecution. A person who willfully violates an injunction by refusing to vacate a dwelling pursuant to court order; by going to a residence, school, place of employment, or specified place regularly frequented by the other party; by committing a new act of violence; by any other violation of the injunction through an intentional threat, word or act to do violence; or by telephoning, contacting, or otherwise communicating with the other party directly or indirectly can be found in violation of the injunction.

Can I file for an injunction if I did not call the police?

Yes. An injunction is a civil action and is separate and apart from a criminal action. Even if law enforcement was not contacted on a particular matter, if an action constitutes repeat, domestic, dating or sexual violence, you may apply for an injunction and seek a hearing before a County Court Judge.