In Florida, a restraining order or stay away order is called a domestic violence injunction. A domestic violence injunction orders a party to cease contact with the victim or potential victim.

About Domestic Violence Injunction

Domestic violence represents a larger threat than most people realize. Violence is more commonplace in homes than people understand, and many victims of domestic violence do not know how or what to do to protect themselves. Florida has dedicated tremendous resources to protecting families from domestic violence. In Orange County, the family court division has assigned three out of seven judges exclusively to domestic violence cases. These judges review injunction requests and respond with an order, usually within the same day. If you or someone you know is a victim of violence in your home, or at the hands of the child’s other parent, you can find help immediately. The system ensures that the domestic violence claim receives a full hearing that will usually occur two weeks after the initial claim. The claim or threat of violence is real, and is taken very seriously in Florida.

What A Domestic Violence Injunction Can Do

A domestic violence injunction can cause the person that has committed the violence or threatened violence to:
(1) stay away;
(2) leave the home if they live with you;
(3) surrender their guns;
(4) attend anger management courses;
(5) set up a safe contact schedule if there are children involved;
(6) address the need for child support or temporary spousal support (alimony); and
(7) grant other relief such as batters intervention classes.

Standards For an Injunction

A person does not need to have been the victim of violence to be entitled to a domestic violence injunction. If a person is in “imminent fear of serious bodily harm,” meaning they are likely to be injured badly in the immediate future or the next time someone is able to hurt them, then they may qualify for an injunction. If you have been the victim of actual violence, if someone has threatened to hurt you, if someone’s conduct shows that they are likely to hurt you, or if you are being stalked, please consider your rights to an injunction to protect yourself from future violence.