Domestic violence is an unfortunate reality for numerous families in Florida. The victims of these acts can face additional hardships, as the repercussions of domestic violence can affect an entire family. An experienced family attorney can help someone who has been suffering from domestic violence navigate the legal system and protect themselves after an act of violence.
If you are a victim of domestic violence, you could be entitled to assistance and protection through the legal system. However, it may be necessary to take steps on your own to protect yourself. A Coral Gables domestic violence lawyer can help you seek a court order that prevents your abuser from approaching you or harming you further.
What Constitutes Domestic Violence?
It is helpful to understand what distinguishes acts of domestic violence from other criminal offenses. The difference between domestic abuse and crimes like assault is typically the relationship between the two parties.
To qualify as domestic violence, a criminal offense must target a person that is a “family or household member.” This is a broad definition that applies to multiple types of relationships. A household member could be a current or former spouse, as well as any person not related by marriage or blood.
Defining a Household Member
A family or household member does not have to be a relative at all. This status applies to any two people residing together as a family regardless of their marital status. The same is true for parties who have had children together, regardless of the current status of their relationship. Outside of two people who have had a child together, the law considers domestic violence to only apply to individuals who have previously lived together.
There could be legal remedies available following a violent act against a household or family member. Domestic violence usually involves offenses like assault, stalking, sexual battery, or false imprisonment. A Coral Gables domestic violence attorney knows the available legal remedies to protect a victim following these violent offenses.
Getting an Injunction for Domestic Violence
In Florida, individuals experiencing domestic violence can obtain injunctions for protection against domestic violence. A Coral Gables domestic violence attorney assists in the pursuit of these injunctions.
This process begins with something known as a temporary restraining order. These orders can be heard ex parte, which means they can occur even though neither party is present. In an emergency situation, the court can hear testimony from the victim and issue a temporary restraining order against the abuser. This is commonly done after they have already been arrested for domestic violence, but that is not always the case.
This injunction is only temporary. In time, the other party will have a chance to be heard in court. At the court hearing, the judge will determine if it is necessary to extend the injunction for a set period of time.
Reach Out to a Coral Gables Domestic Violence Attorney for Help Today
As a victim of domestic violence, you deserve to be free from the worry and fear of further harm. An experienced attorney can advocate for you as you seek justice and protection. Schedule a free consultation as soon as possible and let a Coral Gables domestic violence lawyer advise you on your options for pursuing a restraining order.