Restraining orders are a necessity for many victims of crime depending on their specific case. Unfortunately, this is a legal process that can also be abused resulting in a party obtaining a false restraining order against you without just cause. If someone is attempting to file a false restraining order against you in Florida, it is important to know you can fight it. A Florida court will allow you to defend your case and provide the evidence necessary to dissolve a restraining order that is not warranted.
Know the Process
A restraining order usually begins with one party filing initial paperwork with the civil court or Florida domestic relations court. The first hearing consists of the judge, the party requesting the order and any witnesses she has. The judge will normally grant a temporary order solely based on what she has told him. You will not be aware of this hearing until you receive the temporary order. At that time, you will be notified of the full hearing. At the full hearing, the judge will hear both sides and decide whether a permanent protection order should be granted.
Know the Law
Familiarize yourself with Florida law concerning restraining orders. Although the laws throughout the states are similar, each state has its differences. When it is time for your hearing, the court will not accept your ignorance of the law as an excuse for not being prepared. It also is important to obey a temporary restraining order. You can be charged with a crime for violating the temporary order. A criminal charge will likely sway the court to grant the permanent order.
When determining whether to grant a restraining order, the Florida court will look at several factors, such as prior criminal history, documented proof of abuse and if there was a prior order against you. You will want to have evidence of your own. This would include police reports against the requesting party and witnesses who can testify on your behalf and refute the party's claims. Save text messages, voice mails and emails the other party sent you if they help your case. Document your conversations and have a proof of an alibi to show you could not have committed certain acts you are accused of.
Protect Your Rights
If the Florida court handling your case were to grant a permanent restraining order, this can negatively affect you in some ways. If you have children, the court can order supervised visitation. In some cases, the court may even take away your visitation rights. A permanent restraining order will also be public record. This means potential employers searching for information can become aware of a restraining order and the reasons behind it. Hiring an attorney who practices law in Florida is always the best way to assure your rights are protected.