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Can I seek an Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence against a family member?

A recent Fifth District Court of Appeals case dealt with an injunction filed against a family member. In Morris v. Mascia, the appellee filed a petition seeking an injunction for protection against domestic violence against his Wife’s uncle. The trial court entered the injunction, but the appellate court reversed it. In order to have standing to seek an injunction, the Florida statutes require that a petitioner be a “family or household member”. A “family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit. In Morris v. Mascia, the appellate court found that there was no evidence that the parties ever resided together in the same single dwelling unit. As such, the Petitioner did not have standing to bring the domestic violence injunction.

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