I Have Been Accused of Violating a Restraining Order in Florida
Violating a Florida restraining order is disobeying a court order – and, that’s never a good thing. Judges expect that you will do exactly what they say and your disregard of the order will be taken extremely seriously. In fact, if convicted, you will likely be fined or jailed.
What Should I Do if There is a Restraining Order Against Me?
- If you have been ordered to stay away from someone, absolutely do it. Do not contact them even indirectly through a third party.
- If you’ve made a mistake and violated the restraining order, consult with a criminal defense lawyer to mitigate the damages, immediately.
What Does “Violate a Restraining Order” Mean?
Your case may have additional specifications; however, in general, if someone has a restraining order against you, it means that you cannot have ANY contact with that person.
- No texting.
- No messaging through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.
- No email messages.
- No phone calls or “wrong” numbers.
- No drive bys to see whose car is where.
- No going anywhere near the protected person’s home, work, or car.
How Long Can a Restraining Order Violation Land Me in Jail?
In Florida, you can be jailed for up to a year for violating a restraining order. It’s a misdemeanor.
However, if you are also convicted of related offenses such as assault, battery, breaking and entering, harassment, terroristic threats, cyber stalking, or stalking, the jail time increases significantly.
If convicted of a felony, the potential jail time is years, with the specific sentence based on the crime committed and circumstances.
What if the Restraining Order Was Erroneously Granted?
Even if you think a mistake was made and that the restraining order should not have been granted, do not initiate any contact.
- If you are angry or just want to make the protected person understand that you didn’t mean to hurt him or her, stay away – NO EXCEPTIONS.
- Consult with a criminal defense attorney. You may be able to challenge the restraining order to avoid it showing up on a background check, get your personal belongings out of an apartment, or live in a particular home.
- Otherwise, you can “ride it out” and it will expire. Restraining orders are not permanent.
Where to Get Help if You are Accused of Violating a Restraining Order
Fortunately, our criminal defense attorneys are able to offer a free consultation to get you on the fast track home. During that consultation, one of our criminal defense attorneys will explain your potential defenses.