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Conditions of Pretrial Release

Bail proceedings may be handled a bit differently for domestic violence cases compared to other crimes. Florida law sets forth specific conditions to protect victims of domestic violence. One of these conditions may be an order of no contact requiring you to follow certain rules during criminal procedures. 

The conditions for pretrial release are similar to those of an injunction. You won’t be able to communicate with the victim or be within 500 feet of them. It’s a possibility you’ll be forced to move out if you and the victim share a residence.

If you or someone you know has been charged with domestic violence, it’s imperative that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney.

Attorney for Conditions of Pretrial Release in St. Petersburg, Florida

In some cases, you may be court-ordered to follow specific conditions upon your pretrial release. These rules could restrict your movements and hinder your daily life. Don’t leave the courtroom without fighting for your rights. Call the attorneys at Morris Law Firm, P.A.. 

The attorneys at Morris Law Firm, P.A. excel at representing people with domestic violence allegations. We understand there are two sides to every story. Our attorneys want to use our knowledge and resources to help you get your life back on track. Call us now at (727) 388-4736 to schedule a free consultation. 

Morris Law Firm, P.A. accepts clients throughout the greater Pinellas County area including Largo, Bradenton, Dunedin, Clearwater and Tampa. 

Overview of Pretrial Release Conditions in Florida

Domestic Violence Defined Under Florida Law

Florida Statute § 741.28 defines domestic violence as any of the following crimes against a family or household member. 

A family or household member can be your: 

  • Spouse;
  • Former spouse;
  • Shared children;
  • Mother;
  • Father;
  • Aunt;
  • Uncle;
  • Grandparents;
  • People related by marriage; or
  • People who currently live together or have lived together as a family.

Florida Statute § 784.046 defines dating violence as any violence between people who have a romantic relationship. A dating relationship is determined by the following factors:   

  • The relationship lasted for at least 6 months;
  • The relationship involved affection and sexual involvement between both people; and
  • You and your partner had frequent romantic interactions over time and on a continuous basis. 

Standard Conditions of Pretrial Release

Every person released on bail must follow certain conditions. These conditions are to ensure you go to all your court dates and to protect the general public. Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure 3.131(b) lists the conditions you may be required to follow if released on bail.

  • Pay a certain bond amount specified by a judge;
  • Restricted on your travels during criminal proceedings;
  • Placed with a designated person or organization for supervision;
  • Refrain from any criminal activity; and
  • Appear at all your upcoming court dates.

Order of No Contact in Florida

In some cases, a judge may issue an order of no contact for the safety of the victim, their family and friends. This will be in addition to the other conditions you must follow upon pretrial release. Florida Statute § 903.47 states that an order of no contact requires you to refrain from any contact with the alleged victim.

The order of no contact is effective immediately once it’s issued. The court order will last for the duration of pretrial release or until it’s modified by the court. You will receive the order in writing that detailing prohibited acts, which include: 

  • Communicating orally with the victim;
  • Telephoning the victim;
  • Electronically communicating with the victim;
  • Any physical or violent contact with the victim or anyone on their property;
  • Being within 500 feet of the victim’s home;
  • Being within 500 feet of the victim’s vehicle;
  • Being within 500 feet of the victim’s place of employment or any other frequently visited locations.

You may be forced to leave your residence if you share it with the victim. It’s important that you comply with all the conditions of your pretrial release. If you show good behavior, the court may modify the conditions. Any pretrial condition modification will be notified to the state attorney and the victim.

Penalties for Violating a Condition of Pretrial Release in Florida

Violating a pretrial release condition is never a good idea. You could lose your pretrial release and be court ordered to jail. If you’re incarcerated, you could lose precious time to formulating a strong defense. 

A violation can not only send you to jail, but it can hurt your case. If word of your violation gets into the courtroom, it could influence the jury’s ultimate decision. The jury may think you’re likely to reoffend or you’re guilty of the offense.

Additional Resources

Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure – Visit the official website of the Florida Bar to access the Rules of Criminal Procedure. Find more information about pretrial release, bail, bail modification, and pretrial detention procedures. 

Florida Conditions of Pretrial Release – Visit the official website of Online Sunshine, a collection of state laws and legislation in Florida. Access the statute to learn more about the no contact court order, its requirements and other relevant information. 

Lawyer for Conditions of Pretrial Release in St. Petersburg, Florida

If you or someone you know has been issued a no contact court order, it’s imperative that you contact an experienced defense attorney. A skilled attorney can file for a modification of your pretrial release conditions. They can also battle for your rights in a courtroom if necessary.

Call an attorney at Morris Law Firm, P.A. today. Our attorneys have years of experience in criminal defense. We will utilize our defense techniques to get you the best possible outcome. Contact us today at (727) 388-4736 to set up a free consultation.

Morris Law Firm, P.A. practices law at the Pinellas County Center of Justice and surrounding areas including Tampa, Oldsmar, Tarpon Spring, Clearwater and St. Petersburg.

This article was last updated on December 31, 2018.