No Contact Orders
In Florida, a no contact order is a kind of injunction that the court may impose as part of your pretrial release after you’ve been arrested for domestic violence. The no contact order is put in place to stop you from indirectly or directly getting in touch with the purported victim of violence for as long as the criminal case is underway or until the court modifies or lifts the order. If you have questions about a no contact order, an experienced St. Petersburg domestic violence attorney may be able to help.No Contact Orders
If the court puts in place a no contact order that restrains you in St. Petersburg, you aren’t allowed to interact with the victim. You’re not allowed to call, email, text, fax, write or leave messages for the alleged victim. Communications that are prohibited include social media communications such as direct messages on Twitter, or posts on Facebook or LinkedIn. You won’t be able to intentionally go in the vicinity of the victim or within a certain distance of his or her house or car or workplace, touch, or even intentionally be in the alleged victim’s vicinity.
You are also not supposed to make indirect contact with the purported victim. In other words, you can’t try to send messages to the purported victim through a mutual friend or intermediary. The purported victim can’t give you permission to contact him or her. The court makes the order, and only the court is allowed to modify it. Once the order is in place, you won’t be able to get a pass for contact by claiming the purported victim contacted you first.Requests to Lift a No Contact Order
You may need to ask the court to lift a no contact order. The purpose of asking the court to lift the no contact order is to reduce your difficulties under the order. For example, if you and the purported victim have children together or wish to reconcile because you depend on each other for social support, it may be appropriate to ask the court to lift the order.
To lift or change the order, you’ll need to ask the court’s permission with a motion to modify the conditions of pretrial release. In the motion, it should let the court know that the parties want to contact each other again, the purported victim freely and voluntarily wants the order lifted and isn’t scared of you, and the purported victim doesn’t anticipate future violence from you. It should also specify what kind of contact you both want to have. The contact might be only for the purpose of child visitation. It might be only third part contact or it might be highly limited contact. The court makes the decision about whether the order should be lifted or modified. In most cases, the purported victim will need to testify. An attorney with experience handling domestic violence cases can represent you in proceedings of this nature.No Contact Order Violation
If you violate a no contact order, you can be charged with a first degree misdemeanor. Every instance of contact will be a distinct crime, which means you can face multiple charges. When there are several contacts in violation of the no contact order, you may face consecutive sentences that result in years in jail. Often, you’ll be put on no bond status until a first appearance for the violation, and this may stay in effect until you’re arraigned.Consult a Knowledgeable Domestic Violence Attorney in St. Petersburg
No contact orders are put in place to protect purported victims of domestic violence. Violations of no-contact orders are treated seriously by Florida prosecutors. It is important to follow the dictates of the no contact order unless you’ve gotten this order lifted or modified by the court. If you are concerned about a no contact order in St. Petersburg, a trustworthy criminal defense lawyer can advised you regarding your rights. The founder of Hanlon Law, Will Hanlon, has provided aggressive and strategic defenses to those accused of crimes since 1994. Please call Hanlon Law at 727.289.0222 or contact us via our online form.