When Is It Time to Seek a Restraining Order?

While restraining orders are commonly thought of as a last step which should only be taken after you have exhausted all other options, filing a restraining order sooner rather than later may actually be one of the smartest things you ever do. Although we all enter into marriages and relationships hoping and believing the person we have chosen to share our life with is kind and would never harm us, sadly, this is not always the case. While all couples go through periods of disagreements, when fighting becomes constant, leading to violence or the threat of violence, it may be necessary to seek protection for your sake and the sake of your loved ones.

At Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A., our Clearwater restraining order attorneys are here to provide assistance during your time of need. No one should have to live in fear of an abusive spouse or partner. Keep reading for the essential signs of when it’s time to seek a restraining order, and contact Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. for assistance with restraining orders and all your other family law needs.

Restraining Orders: When Do You Know?

In the state of Florida, a restraining order is known as an “injunction for protection.” A civil court will issue a restraining order if there is sufficient evidence that the person named in the injunction has harmed or credibly threatened to harm the person filing it. Once it is issued, the individual named in the restraining order will be barred from coming within a certain distance of the individual who requested the order, as well as their children, under penalty of law.

There are four technical justifications for seeking a restraining order in the state of Florida:

  1. Dating Violence: In cases where the petitioner and the respondent have not lived together, have no children, and have been in a relationship for at least 6 months, the petitioner may file for a restraining order for dating violence.
  2. Domestic Violence: In cases where the petitioner or responded have lived together or have children, the petitioner may file a for restraining order for domestic violence.
  3. Sexual Violence: In cases where the petitioner has been a victim of sexual abuse and has reported it to law enforcement, they may request a sexual violence restraining order.
  4. Repeat Violence: In cases where the petitioner has been repeatedly stalked or threatened by the respondent, they may request a restraining order for repeat violence (this type of injunction is usually granted to individuals who are not in a romantic relationship.)

Many people assume that you can only seek a restraining order once your spouse or partner has become physically violent. However, this is not necessarily the case. It is important to remember that the threat or imminent danger may be enough to receive a domestic violence restraining order under Florida state law. Moreover, an injunction for repeat violence may be available if you only casually know someone, or perhaps went on a few dates with them, and they begin threatening you and refusing to leave you alone.

Common signs it’s time to seek a restraining order include:

  • An abuser has a history of harassing you, your family, or your children
  • An abuser has a history of making threats against you, your family, or your children
  • An abuser has threatened you with weapons
  • An abuser has destroyed your personal property
  • An abuser has a history of stalking you
  • An abuser has a criminal history involving violence or threats of violence
  • An abuser has a prior restraining order against them
  • An abuser has been restrained or forced to leave your property by the police
  • An abuser has injured or killed a pet
  • An abuser has attempted to harm or kidnap a family member
  • An abuser has sexually assaulted you
  • An abuser has physically assaulted you

Don’t Go Through This Alone. Hire an Attorney Who Understands.

We all want to think that people can change, yet the reality is that someone with a history of abuse is likely to repeat the cycle of violence over and over again, until someone puts a legal stop to their behavior. Securing a restraining order may feel like an arduous and emotionally draining process, but it may be the only way to truly sever ties with someone who has repeatedly shown they are a danger to you and the other people in your life. If there are children involved, it is especially important to take this step, as the longer you wait, the greater chance there is that your is an abuser will hurt them as well.

The skilled attorneys at Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. have spent years protecting individuals from abusers, and are here to provide compassionate and dedicated legal assistance when you need it most. Our domestic violence lawyers believe that no one should feel powerless to escape from an abusive relationship. Call Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A., and start taking your power back today.

Our firm is available by phone at (727) 245-9009, or you can contact us online anytime.