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Call Us at: 954-736-2400 | Open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm

Story of Justice: CCLA Helps Janis Protect Her Child From Abuse

Janis contacted Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida seeking representation for her Domestic Violence (DV) case. She filed a Petition for Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence on behalf of her minor daughter. The Respondent was her daughter’s biological father, but they were divorced. In the narrative of her Petition, Janis wrote that the child told Janis that her father had sexually assaulted her. The Respondent had a criminal history and convictions for sexually abusing minors. However, there was a parenting plan ordered in the divorce that gave the Respondent timesharing with the child. After the child reported the abuse, Janis sought the Court’s protection via an Injunction and stopped the timesharing when given 100% timesharing.

CCLA accepted representation and entered our appearance. At the return hearing, the Temporary Injunction was extended when Respondent said that he wanted time to hire an attorney. We filed a Motion for Use of Child Hearsay and set the Motion for a hearing. The Temporary Injunction and Motion were set for an in-person hearing. At court, before the hearing started, the CCLA attorney spoke with Respondent, who had still not hired an attorney. We explained that he could agree to the entry of an injunction with no findings, or that we would be proceeding to a trial on that day. Seeing Janis with her attorney and all of our witnesses ready to testify about what he did and what the child said, Respondent changed his mind and said he did not want to draw things out. He would agree to a Final Judgment of Injunction until further order of the court. When we entered the courtroom for the hearing, we informed the Judge that we just reached an agreement. Janis was relieved.

The Judge asked the Respondent if he understood that accepting the agreement meant that he would have to stay away from his child. He said yes and admitted to the Court that the child’s mother is the best parent for her. He said he understood everything and wants to go forward with the agreement. The Judge granted a Final Judgment of Injunction until further order of the Court.

When the Final Judgment of Injunction was granted, it modified the previous timesharing agreement. This meant that the child was no longer subject to visits with her abusive father, ensuring the child’s safety. Janis was thankful for CCLA’s help navigating the court process.

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*Names, images, and details have been changed to protect our client’s privacy

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