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  • Writer's pictureMichael Stanski

Military Versus Civilian Protective Orders During Florida Divorce

Often in the course of a divorce one party must seek protection from the other party. This is typically due to domestic violence or threats of domestic violence. Protective order is the name given to a court order which sets conditions on parties’ contact. Common terms to describe a protective order are injunctions or restraining orders. This article addresses military protective orders as well as the types of civilian protective orders (CPO) available in Florida.

Military Protective Orders (MPO)(10 U.S.C. § 1567(a)): Federal law allows for commanders to issue a MPO on active duty personnel. A commander can issue an MPO based on their own discretion. MPOs are not enforceable by civilian authorities. A active duty service member who violates an MPO is subject to judicial and non-judicial punishment as permitted by the Uniform Code of Military Justice specifically Article 92. Time limits on the MPO and conditions of the MPO are subject to the discretion of the commander.

In contrast here are Florida’s protective orders. These orders are issued by a judge in a court of law.

Typically a person will petition for a protective order. A court may or may not issue a temporary order. Once a petition is filed an evidentiary hearing will be held in front of a judge for both sides to present evidence regarding the petition. A judge will then grant or deny a permanent injunction. If the injunction is granted the judge will set conditions and/or limits on the injunction.

A party subject to the injunction may dissolve an injunction by applying to the court.

A party seeking protection may simultaneously seek a MPO and CPO. Under federal law a CPO is enforceable on military installations by military authorities (10 U.S.C. § 1561a).

DISCLAIMER: This information is provided for educational purposes only. Laws, regulations, and rules constantly change and information is valid for the date published only. No legal advice is given. No attorney client relationship has been formed by reading this entry. Each case is different and you should consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction before undergoing any legal proceeding.

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