FLORIDA DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LEGAL DOCUMENT PREPARER
It takes courage for victims of domestic violence to take action against their abusers due to their very reasonable fear of retaliation. Most people associate domestic violence with husbands and wives, but there is an increasing insistence of abuse of the elderly by their caretakers. Most victims of domestic abuse cannot afford a Florida domestic violence attorneys and groups that help victims of domestic violence with legal assistance often have very long waits. That’s why some victims of domestic violence decide to handle matters themselves with the help of a Florida domestic violence legal document preparer.
Florida Domestic Abuse Statute
Section 741.30(1a) of the Florida Statute gives a family member who has reasonable cause to believe they are in imminent danger of domestic violence standing to file for an injunction. Family member is very broadly defined to include most people that are living together as if they are family, or people that have a child in common. The courts have a simplified procedure for domestic violence injunctions to enable victims to handle these cases without an attorney. The victim must allege facts to show imminent danger such as:
- Harming or threatening to harm his or her friends, family or co-workers
- Harming or threatening to harm a pet
- Using or threatening to use weapons such as knives and guns
- Criminal history of violence
- Other alarming or threatening acts
Types of Domestic Abuse
Not all domestic abuse is between husbands and wives or boyfriends and girlfriends. Caretakers may become abusive when they are frustrated with the demands of taking care of a family member, especially when dementia or other ailments cause them to be rude to their caretaker. This is usually an older relative and is known as elder abuse, but it can also happen with a disabled adult child that is abused by their parent(s). What all types of domestic abuse have in common is that it is difficult for the victim to remove themselves from the situation, both for financial reasons and for fear of retaliation.
Florida Domestic Abuse Injunctions
After you file for the injunction, the judge will decide whether there is an “immediate and present danger” of abuse. If the court rules in your favor, it will usually issue a temporary order which may:
- Give you sole possession of your residence
- Change a parenting plan
- Forbid the accused of coming within a certain radius
A hearing will be set to determine whether the temporary injunction should be made permanent. The penalties for violating both temporary and permanent domestic violence injunctions in Florida are severe, punishable by a $1,000 fine and up to a year in jail, even if no violence occurs – the crime is simply violating the injunction. Repeat violations can result in more serious felony charges that include long prison sentences.