Domestic Violence

Timothy Nies

Christian Van Riper

"We Work for You...."

Van Riper and Nies merges tenacious litigation, personal service. and skill in fighting for our clients' freedom...

Domestic Violence offenses are those committed by one family member against another while living in the same home. When police officers are called to a domestic dispute, someone is usually going to jail. Oftentimes, it does not matter what the circumstances were or who was truly at fault. This is why it is important to contact a criminal defense attorneys ASAP. We are ready to fight for your rights - day or night.

As stated in Florida Statute 741.28(2) "Domestic Violence" means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.

When called to the scene of a domestic dispute, police officers are often compelled to make quick judgments based on scant evidence, and more often than not, arrest the person who did not call 911. Domestic violence charges can often lead to jail time and loss of parental rights.

Due to the nature of crimes involving a family, especially when children are involved, criminal defense lawyers with experience in domestic violence offenses are needed to protect the future of your family. A domestic violence arrest will usually result in a court-issued restraining order until the case is resolved, meaning the accused may need to move out of his or her residence and be separated from his or her family.  If you have been arrested for domestic violence, retaining a criminal defense lawyer is critical.

For more information about our criminal defense practice, please call us at 772-283-8712, 954-369-0776 or 561-962-3130, complete the contact form below, or e-mail Christian Van Riper at Our attorneys answer our phones day and night.

Stuart: 900 SE Ocean Boulevard, Building E, Suite 140, Stuart, FL 34994.

West Palm Beach: 801 Northpoint Parkway, West Palm Beach, FL 33407.

Deerfield Beach: 10 Fairway Drive, Deerfield Beach, FL 33441.

By Tim Nies

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Domestic battery or domesti violence also includes choking a spouse or others.


Felony battery; domestic battery by strangulation.


A person commits felony battery if he or she:


Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; and


Causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement.


A person commits domestic battery by strangulation if the person knowingly and intentionally, against the will of another, impedes the normal breathing or circulation of the blood of a family or household member or of a person with whom he or she is in a dating relationship, so as to create a risk of or cause great bodily harm by applying pressure on the throat or neck of the other person or by blocking the nose or mouth of the other person. This paragraph does not apply to any act of medical diagnosis, treatment, or prescription which is authorized under the laws of this state.


As used in this subsection, the term:


“Family or household member” has the same meaning as in s. 741.28.


“Dating relationship” means a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature.


A person who commits felony battery or domestic battery by strangulation commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

Domestic violence injunction in Florida:


Domestic violence; injunction; powers and duties of court and clerk; petition; notice and hearing; temporary injunction; issuance of injunction; statewide verification system; enforcement.


There is created a cause of action for an injunction for protection against domestic violence.


Any person described in paragraph (e), who is either the victim of domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28 or has reasonable cause to believe he or she is in imminent danger of becoming the victim of any act of domestic violence, has standing in the circuit court to file a sworn petition for an injunction for protection against domestic violence.


This cause of action for an injunction may be sought whether or not any other cause of action is currently pending between the parties. However, the pendency of any such cause of action shall be alleged in the petition.


In the event a subsequent cause of action is filed under chapter 61, any orders entered therein shall take precedence over any inconsistent provisions of an injunction issued under this section which addresses matters governed by chapter 61.


A person’s right to petition for an injunction shall not be affected by such person having left a residence or household to avoid domestic violence.


This cause of action for an injunction may be sought by family or household members. No person shall be precluded from seeking injunctive relief pursuant to this chapter solely on the basis that such person is not a spouse.


This cause of action for an injunction shall not require that either party be represented by an attorney.


Any person, including an officer of the court, who offers evidence or recommendations relating to the cause of action must either present the evidence or recommendations in writing to the court with copies to each party and their attorney, or must present the evidence under oath at a hearing at which all parties are present.


Nothing in this section shall affect the title to any real estate.


The court is prohibited from issuing mutual orders of protection. This does not preclude the court from issuing separate injunctions for protection against domestic violence where each party has complied with the provisions of this section. Compliance with the provisions of this section cannot be waived.


Notwithstanding any provision of chapter 47, a petition for an injunction for protection against domestic violence may be filed in the circuit where the petitioner currently or temporarily resides, where the respondent resides, or where the domestic violence occurred. There is no minimum requirement of residency to petition for an injunction for protection.


Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the assessment of a filing fee for a petition for protection against domestic violence is prohibited effective October 1, 2002. However, subject to legislative appropriation, the clerk of the circuit court may, on a quarterly basis, submit to the Office of the State Courts Administrator a certified request for reimbursement for petitions for protection against domestic violence issued by the court, at the rate of $40 per petition. The request for reimbursement shall be submitted in the form and manner prescribed by the Office of the State Courts Administrator. From this reimbursement, the clerk shall pay any law enforcement agency serving the injunction the fee requested by the law enforcement agency; however, this fee shall not exceed $20.


No bond shall be required by the court for the entry of an injunction.


The clerk of the court shall assist petitioners in seeking both injunctions for protection against domestic violence and enforcement for a violation thereof as specified in this section.


All clerks’ offices shall provide simplified petition forms for the injunction, any modifications, and the enforcement thereof, including instructions for completion.


The clerk of the court shall advise petitioners of the opportunity to apply for a certificate of indigence in lieu of prepayment for the cost of the filing fee, as provided in paragraph (a).


The clerk of the court shall ensure the petitioner’s privacy to the extent practical while completing the forms for injunctions for protection against domestic violence.


The clerk of the court shall provide petitioners with a minimum of two certified copies of the order of injunction, one of which is serviceable and will inform the petitioner of the process for service and enforcement.


Clerks of court and appropriate staff in each county shall receive training in the effective assistance of petitioners as provided or approved by the Florida Association of Court Clerks.


The clerk of the court in each county shall make available informational brochures on domestic violence when such brochures are provided by local certified domestic violence centers.


The clerk of the court in each county shall distribute a statewide uniform informational brochure to petitioners at the time of filing for an injunction for protection against domestic or repeat violence when such brochures become available. The brochure must include information about the effect of giving the court false information about domestic violence.


The sworn petition shall allege the existence of such domestic violence and shall include the specific facts and circumstances upon the basis of which relief is sought.


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