Orlando Restraining Order Defense Attorneys
What Happens if You Violate a Protection Order in Florida?
Restraining and protection orders are most often issued in civil court, and often in cases of domestic violence. In Florida, it is a criminal offense to violate one of these orders. In addition to violating one of these orders, it is not uncommon for stalking or other related charges to be added to the charges filed against you.
If you have a Florida restraining order filed against you, the best course of action is to not violate the order. However, if you do, it is important that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side who may be able to get the charges against you reduced or dismissed.
What Violates a Restraining Order?
In civil court, a restraining order may be placed against someone to restrict that person’s ability to have contact with another person. This is often done to stop threats or harassment of a person’s safety. It is also possible for one person to have multiple restraining orders placed against him or her all at the same time. If the person who initiated the order against you attempts to have contact with you, this is a violation of the order, as well, and it is best to contact your attorney to communicate with the court that the individual tried to contact you so that you are not found in violation of the order.
Penalties for Violating a Restraining Order
There are a variety of penalties that can be placed against the defendant in these cases. Although the offense is considered a first-degree misdemeanor that is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine up to $1,000, if there have been multiple violations, the penalties may be increasingly harsh.
Because a restraining order is meant to protect the victim from the aggressor before a violent crime is committed, if authorities think that you have violated a restraining order, they may put you in jail before the crime is committed. If you feel that you have an unfounded restraining order filed against you, it is imperative that you contact an attorney to try to get the order lifted rather than violating the order.
Defenses for Violating a Restraining Order
Of course, you need to speak to your attorney to determine what defense may be your best option, but some of the defenses that are commonly used in violation of a restraining order cases include:
- You were not notified: If you never knew that you were supposed to stay away from the party, the court cannot punish you for violating the order.
- The contact was not intentional: In some situations you may come into contact with the person at a public location. If that happens, and you did not harass or threaten the person, you may have violated the order, but not intentionally.
- The contact occurred when you were lawfully carrying out a civil order: In some cases, a restraining order may be filed in a child custody case. However, other orders may be in conflict with the restraining order, for example, going to the other person’s house to pick up your child.
- Plea bargains: If you do not have a defense, a plea bargain may be the best way to obtain a lenient punishment.
Contact an Attorney Today
If you are facing charges for violating a restraining order, contact the attorneys at Moses & Rooth today. We will work to create the best possible defense strategy for the charges that you are facing.