Can I File a Restraining Order Against My Abusive Wife?

Abuse has no gender; any person can commit an act of violence against another. This violence can be physical, mental, verbal, and/or emotional, and it can be committed by either spouse. If you have been abused, threatened, or otherwise mistreated by your spouse, you can take legal steps to protect yourself.

When filing a restraining order, a violent action is defined as:

  • assault;
  • battery;
  • stalking;
  • kidnapping;
  • false captivity; and/or
  • any criminal offense that could result in injury.

How to File a Restraining Order

If you have been the victim of abuse, the first thing you must do is immediately remove yourself from the situation. If you are able, go to the nearest police station to make an official statement.

If the instance of violence was severe enough, you can request a temporary restraining order that will go into effect immediately. This is known as an ex parte temporary injunction, and it lasts until you can go before a court. Once you are safe, contact an attorney experienced in filing restraining orders.

Upon filing the petition, a judge will make one of 3 decisions:

  • determine if the allegations are enough for a temporary restraining order;
  • determine if the situation meets the requirements for a temporary order or a hearing; and/or
  • initiate a temporary restraining order.

Types of Restraining Orders

Florida separates protection orders into 4 distinct categories:

  1. Domestic: Domestic violence is when any person in a shared residence has reason to believe they are in danger of becoming a victim of abuse. This situation can be between spouses, roommates, and/or family members.
  2. Repeat: Repeat violence is when a person has been the victim of stalking or violence on more than one occasion within the past 6 months.
  3. Dating: Dating violence is when parties (within the previous 6 months) have been dating or involved in a sexual relationship and one party is threatened by violence or stalking.
  4. Sexual: Sexual violence is any instance of abuse committed in the presence of, or upon, a person younger than 16 years old.

For a court to issue an order, you must establish that you have a reasonable fear of violence.

Aggressively Protecting Your Rights

At Dale L. Bernstein, Chartered Law Office, our restraining order attorney will help you defend your rights and protect all members of an aggressed party. We will do everything we can to advocate for your best interests and apply the correct restraining order to your situation.

For an appointment, call our firm today at (727) 312-1112 or contact us online.


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