Domestic violence can happen at any time or anywhere including vacation. There are different kinds of domestic abuse that may not include physical violence at all but if a spouse or partner does commit domestic violence while out of state on vacation, what happens?
Understanding Domestic Violence in Florida
According to Florida Statute § 741.28, domestic violence is a crime that involves “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 […].”
Household members may include:
- Former spouses
- Persons residing together
- Persons related by blood or marriage
- Persons who share children regardless of marriage
In Florida, domestic violence is punishable by at least five days of incarceration or years in prison at most. The degree of the charge determines the final sentencing which means the degree of harm caused, property damage, or the use of a firearm can elevate the charges from a misdemeanor to a felony.
In addition to jail or prison time, the court may impose a protective or no-contact order. If the judge chooses to establish a no-contact order, the individual named in the order may not contact the person protected by the no-contact order. If there is a violation of a protective order, there may be criminal charges.
Out-of-State Criminal Charges
When crimes happen out of state, individuals are subject to the state’s laws in which the crime took place. For example, if someone is on vacation in Broward County and shoplift, they are subject to the laws and punishments for shoplifting in Florida, not the state they are visiting from.
Because the location is a primary determining factor for how and to what degree the crime is punished. As mentioned previously, Broward County punishes felony domestic violence harshly with a possible prison sentence of up to 15 years in prison.
If the judge decides to establish a protective order for a case that involves non-residents, the person protected by the order must register the existing directive with the district court in their home state. This ensures that the individual named in the document cannot continue to perpetrate violence or aggression for as long as both parties are on vacation and when they return home. Out-of-state protective orders may also shore up a domestic violence case especially if a court in another state determines that domestic violence was in fact committed. Additionally, if a person violates a protective order from a court in another state, they could face additional consequences.
Domestic violence is a very serious criminal charge. Accusations of DV can be extremely damaging especially if they are false. Not only do criminal charges jeopardize an individual’s job opportunities, but they can also cause a person to lose their right to vote and housing opportunities. For those who may be embroiled in a custody case, domestic violence charges could persuade the court to revoke visitation and eliminate any opportunities for custody.
Entrust Your Case to Evan Hoffman
When facing out-of-state domestic violence charges on vacation, it is crucial that individuals entrust the matter to a qualified attorney. Evan Hoffman has extensive experience with a variety of domestic violence cases including those that involve individuals on vacation and out-of-state residents. He has served the community as a former prosecutor turned defense attorney and has successfully helped countless clients achieve the most optimal result.
If you have been charged with domestic violence while on vacation in Broward County, contact The Hoffman Firm.