Domestic Violence


Any victim of abuse has the right to file an injunction against their alleged abuser. The court packets for each of the five types of violence outlined below may be downloaded for free. Each packet includes complete instructions on filing the injunction. Once the injunction is granted, two certified copies are provided. Any questions regarding this issue please contact the Family Law Division at 352-463-3170.


When filing a complaint, bring the following with you:

  • Driver’s license or identification which includes your picture and signature.
  • Specific dates of abuse or threats of abuse.
  • Specific locations where abuse or threats occurred.

You should also be able to provide:

  • Name of respondent (alleged abuser).
  • Physical description of respondent, including height, weight, scars, date of birth, etc.
  • Current residence address of respondent, including telephone number.
  • Respondent’s employer and employer’s address and phone number, if possible.
  • Respondent’s vehicle information including make, model, color, year and tag number.

If the respondent is outside of Florida, you must provide the Clerk with the following information:

  • Name, address and phone number of Sheriff’s Department having jurisdiction over where respondent may be found.
  • Service fee for that jurisdiction to serve a Temporary Injunction; and if that jurisdiction will accept a personal check from Petitioner for payment of service.
  • Petitioner will be responsible for payment of any sheriff service fees outside the State of Florida.

Request assistance as early in the day as possible, preferably before 4 p.m., to allow sufficient time to complete paperwork and for the Court to review your paperwork.


Download the Domestic Violence packet for free.

Domestic Violence (Florida Statutes 741) 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 who is or was residing in the same single dwelling unit. “Family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who have a child in common regardless of whether they have been married or have resided together at any time.


Download the Repeat Violence packet for free.

Repeat Violence (Florida Statutes 784) means any assault, battery, sexual battery, or stalking by a person against any other person. Repeat Violence means two incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, one of which must have been within six months of the filing of the petition, which are directed against the petitioner or the petitioner’s immediate family member.


Download the Dating Violence packet for free.

Dating violence (Florida Statues 784) means violence between individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the consideration of all the following factors:

  1. A dating relationship must have existed within the past six months.
  2. The nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties.
  3. The frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship.

Dating violence does not include violence in a casual acquaintanceship or violence between individuals who only have engaged in ordinary fraternization in a business or social context.


Download the Sexual Violence packet for free.

If you or a member of your immediate family is a victim of sexual violence, you may ask the court for a protective order (injunction) prohibiting further sexual violence. Sexual violence means any one incident of:

An order for protection may be requested regardless of whether or not any criminal charges based upon the incident were filed, reduced or dismissed by the State Attorney’s office. One of the following factors must exist in order for you to qualify for a sexual violence injunction:

  • The petitioner has reported the sexual violence to a law enforcement agency and is cooperating in any criminal proceeding against the respondent, regardless of whether or not criminal charges based upon the sexual violence have been filed, reduced or dismissed by the State Attorney’s office.
  • The respondent who committed the sexual violence against the victim or minor child was sentenced to a term of imprisonment in state prison for the sexual violence and the respondent’s term of imprisonment has expired or is due to expire within 90 days following the date the Petition for Injunction for Protection Against Sexual Violence is filed.

If neither applies to your situation, you may still qualify for one of the other types of injunctions (domestic, repeat or dating).


Download the Stalking packet for free.

Stalking (Florida Statutes 784) is defined as someone who is purposefully following or harassing you repeatedly over a period of time for no legitimate purpose, causing you emotional stress. If in doing so, he/she threatens your life or threatens to harm you, with the intent to cause you to reasonably fear for your safety, then the act becomes aggravated.