741.315 Recognition of foreign protection orders.—
(1) As used in this section, the term “court of a foreign state” means a court of competent jurisdiction of a state of the United States, other than Florida; the District of Columbia; an Indian tribe; or a commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States.
(2) Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. s. 2265, an injunction for protection against domestic violence issued by a court of a foreign state must be accorded full faith and credit by the courts of this state and enforced by a law enforcement agency as if it were the order of a Florida court issued under s. 741.30, s. 741.31, s. 784.046, or s. 784.047 and provided that the court had jurisdiction over the parties and the matter and that reasonable notice and opportunity to be heard was given to the person against whom the order is sought sufficient to protect that person’s right to due process. Ex parte foreign injunctions for protection are not eligible for enforcement under this section unless notice and opportunity to be heard have been provided within the time required by the foreign state or tribal law, and in any event within a reasonable time after the order is issued, sufficient to protect the respondent’s due process rights.
(3) Notwithstanding s. 55.505 or any other provision to the contrary, neither residence in this state nor registration of foreign injunctions for protection shall be required for enforcement of this order by this state and failure to register the foreign order shall not be an impediment to its enforcement. The following registration procedure shall be available to protected persons who hold orders from a court of a foreign state.
(a) A protected person shall present a certified copy of a foreign order of protection to any sheriff in this state and request that the same be registered in the injunction registry. However, nothing in this section shall operate to preclude the enforcement of any order of protection determined by the law enforcement officer to be valid even if the protected person does not have a certified copy of the foreign protection order. It is not necessary that the protected person register the foreign order in the protected person’s county of residence. Venue is proper throughout the state. The protected person must swear by affidavit, that to the best of the protected person’s knowledge and belief, the attached certified copy of the foreign order, docket number ____________________, issued in the state of __________ on _______________ is currently in effect as written and has not been superseded by any other order and that the respondent has been given a copy of it.
(b) The sheriff shall examine the certified copy of the foreign order and register the order in the injunction registry, noting that it is a foreign order of protection. If not apparent from the face of the certified copy of the foreign order, the sheriff shall use best efforts to ascertain whether the order was served on the respondent. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement shall develop a special notation for foreign orders of protection. The sheriff shall assign a case number and give the protected person a receipt showing registration of the foreign order in this state. There shall be no fee for registration of a foreign order.
(c) The foreign order may also be registered by local law enforcement agencies upon receipt of the foreign order and any accompanying affidavits in the same manner described in paragraphs (a) and (b).
(4)(a) Law enforcement officers shall enforce foreign orders of protection as if they were entered by a court of this state. Upon presentation of a foreign protection order by a protected person, a law enforcement officer shall assist in enforcement of all of its terms, pursuant to federal law, except matters related to child custody, visitation, and support. As to those provisions only, enforcement may be obtained upon domestication of the foreign order pursuant to ss. 55.501-55.509 unless the foreign order is a “pickup order” or “order of bodily attachment” requiring the immediate return of a child.
(b) Before enforcing a foreign protection order, a law enforcement officer should confirm the identity of the parties present and review the order to determine that, on its face, it has not expired. Presentation of a certified or true copy of the protection order shall not be required as a condition of enforcement, provided that a conflicting certified copy is not presented by the respondent or the individual against whom enforcement is sought.
(c) A law enforcement officer shall use reasonable efforts to verify service of process.
(d) Service may be verified as follows:
1. By petitioner: Petitioner may state under oath that to the best of petitioner’s knowledge, respondent was served with the order of protection because petitioner was present at time of service; respondent told petitioner he or she was served; another named person told petitioner respondent was served; or respondent told petitioner he or she knows of the content of the order and date of the return hearing.
2. By respondent: Respondent states under oath that he or she was or was not served with the order.
(e) Enforcement and arrest for violation of a foreign protection order shall be consistent with the enforcement of orders issued in this state.
(f) A law enforcement officer acting in good faith under this section and the officer’s employing agency shall be immune from all liability, civil or criminal, that might otherwise be incurred or imposed by reason of the officer’s or agency’s actions in carrying out the provisions of this section.
(g) Law enforcement shall not require petitioner to sign a registration affidavit as a condition of enforcement.
(h) A foreign order of protection shall remain in effect until the date of expiration on its face; or, if there is no expiration date on its face, a foreign order of protection shall remain in effect until expiration. If the order of protection states on its face that it is a permanent order, then there is no date of expiration.
(5) Any person who acts under this section and intentionally provides a law enforcement officer with a copy of an order of protection known by that person to be false or invalid, or who denies having been served with an order of protection when that person has been served with such order, commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(6) In the event 18 U.S.C. s. 2265 is held to be unconstitutional, this section shall be null and void.
History.–s. 7, ch. 97-155.
741.316 Domestic violence fatality review teams; definition; membership; duties; report by the Department of Law Enforcement.—
(1) As used in this section, the term “domestic violence fatality review team” means an organization that includes, but is not limited to, representatives from the following agencies or organizations:
(a) Law enforcement agencies.
(b) The state attorney.
(c) The medical examiner.
(d) Certified domestic violence centers.
(e) Child protection service providers.
(f) The office of court administration.
(g) The clerk of the court.
(h) Victim services programs.
(i) Child death review teams.
(j) Members of the business community.
(k) County probation or corrections agencies.
(l) Any other persons who have knowledge regarding domestic violence fatalities, nonlethal incidents of domestic violence, or suicide, including research, policy, law, and other matters connected with fatal incidents.
(m) Other representatives as determined by the review team.
(2) A domestic violence fatality review team may be established at a local, regional, or state level in order to review fatal and near-fatal incidents of domestic violence, related domestic violence matters, and suicides. The review may include a review of events leading up to the domestic violence incident, available community resources, current laws and policies, actions taken by systems and individuals related to the incident and the parties, and any information or action deemed relevant by the team, including a review of public records and records for which public records exemptions are granted. The purpose of the teams is to learn how to prevent domestic violence by intervening early and improving the response of an individual and the system to domestic violence. The structure and activities of a team shall be determined at the local level. The team may determine the number and type of incidents it wishes to review and shall make policy and other recommendations as to how incidents of domestic violence may be prevented.
(3) Each local domestic violence fatality review team shall collect data regarding incidents of domestic violence. The data must be collected in a manner that is consistent statewide and in a form determined by the Department of Law Enforcement. Each team may collect such additional data beyond that which is prescribed in the statewide data collection form as will assist in the team’s review. The Department of Law Enforcement shall use the data to prepare an annual report concerning domestic violence fatalities. The report must be submitted by July 1 of each year to the Governor, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
(4) The Governor’s Task Force on Domestic Violence shall provide information and technical assistance to local domestic violence fatality review teams.
(5)(a) There may not be any monetary liability on the part of, and a cause of action for damages may not arise against, any member of a domestic violence fatality review team or any person acting as a witness to, incident reporter to, or investigator for a domestic violence fatality review team for any act or proceeding undertaken or performed within the scope of the functions of the team, unless such person acted in bad faith, with malicious purpose, or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property.
(b) This subsection does not affect the provisions of s. 768.28.
(6) All information and records acquired by a domestic violence fatality review team are not subject to discovery or introduction into evidence in any civil action or disciplinary proceeding by any department or employing agency if the information or records arose out of matters that are the subject of evaluation and review by the domestic violence fatality review team. However, information, documents, and records otherwise available from other sources are not immune from discovery or introduction into evidence solely because the information, documents, or records were presented to or reviewed by such a team. A person who has attended a meeting of a domestic violence fatality review team may not testify in any civil or disciplinary proceedings as to any records or information produced or presented to the team during meetings or other activities authorized by this section. This subsection does not preclude any person who testifies before a team or who is a member of a team from testifying as to matters otherwise within his or her knowledge.
(7) The domestic violence fatality review teams are assigned to the Department of Children and Family Services for administrative purposes.
History.–s. 1, ch. 2000-220.
741.3165 Certain information exempt from disclosure.—
(1)(a) Any information that is confidential or exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution and that is obtained by a domestic violence fatality review team conducting activities as described in s. 741.316 shall retain its confidential or exempt status when held by a domestic violence fatality review team.
(b) Any information contained in a record created by a domestic violence fatality review team pursuant to s. 741.316 that reveals the identity of a victim of domestic violence or the identity of the children of the victim is confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution.
(2) Portions of meetings of any domestic violence fatality review team regarding domestic violence fatalities and their prevention, during which confidential or exempt information, the identity of the victim, or the identity of the children of the victim is discussed, are exempt from s. 286.011 and s. 24(b), Art. I of the State Constitution.
(3) This section is subject to the Open Government Sunset Review Act of 1995 in accordance with s. 119.15, and shall stand repealed on October 2, 2010, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
History.–s. 1, ch. 2000-219; s. 1, ch. 2005-212.
741.32 Certification of batterers’ intervention programs.—
(1) The Legislature finds that the incidence of domestic violence in Florida is disturbingly high, and despite efforts of many to curb this violence, that one person dies at the hands of a spouse, ex-spouse, or cohabitant approximately every 3 days. Further, a child who witnesses the perpetration of this violence becomes a victim as he or she hears or sees it occurring. This child is at high risk of also being the victim of physical abuse by the parent who is perpetrating the violence and, to a lesser extent, by the parent who is the victim. These children are also at a high risk of perpetrating violent crimes as juveniles and, later, becoming perpetrators of the same violence that they witnessed as children. The Legislature finds that there should be standardized programming available to the justice system to protect victims and their children and to hold the perpetrators of domestic violence accountable for their acts. Finally, the Legislature recognizes that in order for batterers’ intervention programs to be successful in protecting victims and their children, all participants in the justice system as well as social service agencies and local and state governments must coordinate their efforts at the community level.
(2) There is hereby established in the Department of Children and Family Services an Office for Certification and Monitoring of Batterers’ Intervention Programs. The department may certify and monitor both programs and personnel providing direct services to those persons who are adjudged to have committed an act of domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28, those against whom an injunction for protection against domestic violence is entered, those referred by the department, and those who volunteer to attend such programs. The purpose of certification of programs is to uniformly and systematically standardize programs to hold those who perpetrate acts of domestic violence responsible for those acts and to ensure safety for victims of domestic violence. The certification and monitoring shall be funded by user fees as provided in s. 741.327.
History.–s. 16, ch. 95-195; s. 37, ch. 96-312; s. 280, ch. 99-8; s. 2, ch. 2001-183.
741.325 Guideline authority.–The Department of Children and Family Services shall promulgate guidelines to govern purpose, policies, standards of care, appropriate intervention approaches, inappropriate intervention approaches during the batterers’ program intervention phase (to include couples counseling and mediation), conflicts of interest, assessment, program content and specifics, qualifications of providers, and credentials for facilitators, supervisors, and trainees. The department shall, in addition, establish specific procedures governing all aspects of program operation, including administration, personnel, fiscal matters, victim and batterer records, education, evaluation, referral to treatment and other matters as needed. In addition, the rules shall establish:
(1) That the primary purpose of the programs shall be victim safety and the safety of the children, if present.
(2) That the batterer shall be held accountable for acts of domestic violence.
(3) That the programs shall be at least 29 weeks in length and shall include 24 weekly sessions, plus appropriate intake, assessment, and orientation programming.
(4) That the program be a psychoeducational model that employs a program content based on tactics of power and control by one person over another.
(5) That the programs and those who are facilitators, supervisors, and trainees be certified to provide these programs through initial certification and that the programs and personnel be annually monitored to ensure that they are meeting specified standards.
(6) The intent that the programs be user-fee funded with fees from the batterers who attend the program as payment for programs is important to the batterer taking responsibility for the act of violence, and from those seeking certification. Exception shall be made for those local, state, or federal programs that fund batterers’ intervention programs in whole or in part.
(7) Standards for rejection and suspension for failure to meet certification standards.
(8) That these standards shall apply only to programs that address the perpetration of violence between intimate partners, spouses, ex-spouses, or those who share a child in common or who are cohabitants in intimate relationships for the purpose of exercising power and control by one over the other. It will endanger victims if courts and other referral agencies refer family and household members who are not perpetrators of the type of domestic violence encompassed by these standards. Accordingly, the court and others who make referrals should refer perpetrators only to programming that appropriately addresses the violence committed.
History.–s. 17, ch. 95-195; s. 3, ch. 2001-183.
741.327 Certification and monitoring of batterers’ intervention programs; fees.—
(1) Pursuant to s. 741.32, the Department of Children and Family Services is authorized to assess and collect:
(a) An annual certification fee not to exceed $300 for the certification and monitoring of batterers’ intervention programs.
(b) An annual certification fee not to exceed $200 for the certification and monitoring of assessment personnel providing direct services to persons who:
1. Are ordered by the court to participate in a domestic violence prevention program;
2. Are adjudged to have committed an act of domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28;
3. Have an injunction entered for protection against domestic violence; or
4. Agree to attend a program as part of a diversion or pretrial intervention agreement by the offender with the state attorney.
(2) All persons required by the court to attend domestic violence programs certified by the Department of Children and Family Services’ Office for Certification and Monitoring of Batterers’ Intervention Programs shall pay an additional $30 fee for each 29-week program to the Department of Children and Family Services.
(3) The fees assessed and collected under this section shall be deposited in the Executive Office of the Governor’s Domestic Violence Trust Fund established in s. 741.01 and directed to the Department of Children and Family Services to fund the cost of certifying and monitoring batterers’ intervention programs.
History.–s. 38, ch. 96-312; s. 6, ch. 98-388; s. 5, ch. 2001-183.
Note.–Former s. 945.76.
741.401 Legislative findings; purpose.–The Legislature finds that persons attempting to escape from actual or threatened domestic violence frequently establish new addresses in order to prevent their assailants or probable assailants from finding them. The purpose of ss. 741.401-741.409 is to enable state and local agencies to respond to requests for public records without disclosing the location of a victim of domestic violence, to enable interagency cooperation with the Attorney General in providing address confidentiality for victims of domestic violence, and to enable state and local agencies to accept a program participant’s use of an address designated by the Attorney General as a substitute mailing address.
History.–s. 1, ch. 98-404.
741.402 Definitions; ss. 741.401-741.409.–Unless the context clearly requires otherwise, as used in ss. 741.401-741.409, the term:
(1) “Address” means a residential street address, school address, or work address of an individual, as specified on the individual’s application to be a program participant under ss. 741.401-741.409.
(2) “Program participant” means a person certified as a program participant under s. 741.403.
(3) “Domestic violence” means an act as defined in s. 741.28 and includes a threat of such acts committed against an individual in a domestic situation, regardless of whether these acts or threats have been reported to law enforcement officers.
History.–s. 2, ch. 98-404.
741.403 Address confidentiality program; application; certification.—
(1) An adult person, a parent or guardian acting on behalf of a minor, or a guardian acting on behalf of a person adjudicated incapacitated under chapter 744 may apply to the Attorney General to have an address designated by the Attorney General serve as the person’s address or the address of the minor or incapacitated person. To the extent possible within funds appropriated for this purpose, the Attorney General shall approve an application if it is filed in the manner and on the form prescribed by the Attorney General and if it contains all of the following:
(a) A sworn statement by the applicant that the applicant has good reason to believe that the applicant, or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, is a victim of domestic violence, and that the applicant fears for his or her safety or his or her children’s safety or the safety of the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made.
(b) A designation of the Attorney General as agent for purposes of service of process and for the purpose of receipt of mail.
(c) The mailing address where the applicant can be contacted by the Attorney General, and the phone number or numbers where the applicant can be called by the Attorney General.
(d) A statement that the new address or addresses that the applicant requests must not be disclosed for the reason that disclosure will increase the risk of domestic violence.
(e) The signature of the applicant and of any individual or representative of any office designated in writing under s. 741.408 who assisted in the preparation of the application, and the date on which the applicant signed the application.
(2) Applications must be filed with the Office of the Attorney General. An application fee may not be charged.
(3) Upon filing a properly completed application, the Attorney General shall certify the applicant as a program participant. Applicants shall be certified for 4 years following the date of filing unless the certification is withdrawn or invalidated before that date. The Attorney General shall by rule establish a renewal procedure.
(4) A person who falsely attests in an application that disclosure of the applicant’s address would endanger the applicant’s safety or the safety of the applicant’s children or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, or who knowingly provides false or incorrect information upon making an application, commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(5) Any person who attempts to gain access to a program participant’s actual address through fraud commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(6) Any person who knowingly enters the address confidentiality program to evade prosecution of criminal laws or civil liability commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
History.–s. 3, ch. 98-404.
741.404 Certification cancellation.—
(1) If the program participant obtains a name change, he or she loses certification as a program participant.
(2) The Attorney General may cancel a program participant’s certification if there is a change in the residential address from the one listed on the application, unless the program participant provides the Attorney General with 14 days’ prior notice of the change of address.
(3) The Attorney General may cancel certification of a program participant if mail forwarded by the Attorney General to the program participant’s address is returned and is undeliverable or if service of process documents are returned to the Attorney General.
(4) The Attorney General shall cancel certification of a program participant who applies using false information.
History.–s. 4, ch. 98-404.
741.405 Agency use of designated address.—
(1) A program participant may request that state and local agencies or other governmental entities use the address designated by the Attorney General as his or her address. When creating a new public record, state and local agencies or other governmental entities shall accept the address designated by the Attorney General as a program participant’s substitute address, unless the Attorney General has determined that:
(a) The agency or entity has a bona fide statutory or administrative requirement for the use of the address that would otherwise be confidential under ss. 741.401-741.409;
(b) This address will be used only for those statutory and administrative purposes;
(c) The agency or entity has identified the specific program participant’s record for which the waiver is requested;
(d) The agency or entity has identified the individuals who will have access to the record; and
(e) The agency or entity has explained how its acceptance of a substitute address will prevent the agency from meeting its obligations under the law and why it cannot meet its statutory or administrative obligation by a change in its internal procedures.
(2) During the review, evaluation, and appeal of an agency’s request, the agency shall accept the use of a program participant’s substitute address.
(3) The Attorney General’s determination to grant or withhold a requested waiver must be based on, but not limited to, an evaluation of information provided under subsection (1).
(4) If the Attorney General determines that an agency or entity has a bona fide statutory or administrative need for the actual address and that the information will be used only for that purpose, the Attorney General may issue the actual address to the agency or entity. When granting a waiver, the Attorney General shall notify and require the agency or entity to:
(a) Maintain the confidentiality of a program participant’s address information;
(b) Limit the use of and access to that address;
(c) Designate an address disposition date after which the agency or entity may no longer maintain the record of the address; and
(d) Comply with any other provisions and qualifications determined appropriate by the Attorney General.
(5) The Attorney General’s denial of an agency’s or entity’s waiver request must be made in writing and include a statement of specific reasons for denial. Acceptance or denial of an agency’s or entity’s waiver request shall constitute final agency action.
(6) Pursuant to chapter 120, an agency or entity may appeal the denial of its request.
(7) A program participant may use the address designated by the Attorney General as his or her work address.
(8) The Office of the Attorney General shall forward all first class mail to the appropriate program participants at no charge.
History.–s. 5, ch. 98-404.
741.406 Voting by program participant; use of designated address by supervisor of elections.–A program participant who is otherwise qualified to vote may request an absentee ballot pursuant to s. 101.62. The program participant shall automatically receive absentee ballots for all elections in the jurisdictions in which that individual resides in the same manner as absentee voters. The supervisor of elections shall transmit the absentee ballot to the program participant at the address designated by the participant in his or her application as an absentee voter. The name, address, and telephone number of a program participant may not be included in any list of registered voters available to the public.
History.–s. 6, ch. 98-404; s. 1, ch. 2003-185.
741.408 Assistance for program applicants.–The Attorney General shall designate state and local agencies and nonprofit agencies that provide counseling and shelter services to victims of domestic violence to assist persons applying to be program participants. Assistance and counseling rendered by the Office of the Attorney General or its designees to applicants does not constitute legal advice.
History.–s. 8, ch. 98-404.
741.409 Adoption of rules.–The Attorney General may adopt rules to facilitate the administration of this chapter by state and local agencies and other governmental entities.
History.–s. 9, ch. 98-404.
741.465 Public records exemption for the Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Domestic Violence.—
(1) The addresses, corresponding telephone numbers, and social security numbers of program participants in the Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Domestic Violence held by the Office of the Attorney General are exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution, except the information may be disclosed under the following circumstances: to a law enforcement agency for purposes of assisting in the execution of a valid arrest warrant; if directed by a court order, to a person identified in the order; or if the certification has been canceled. For purposes of this section, the term “address” means a residential street address, school address, or work address, as specified on the individual’s application to be a program participant in the Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Domestic Violence.
1(2) The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of participants in the Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Domestic Violence contained in voter registration and voting records held by the supervisor of elections and the Department of State are exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution, except the information may be disclosed under the following circumstances: to a law enforcement agency for purposes of assisting in the execution of an arrest warrant or, if directed by a court order, to a person identified in the order. This exemption applies to information made exempt by this subsection before, on, or after the effective date of the exemption.
History.–s. 1, ch. 98-405; ss. 3, 4, ch. 2003-185; s. 2, ch. 2005-279.
1Note.–Section 3, ch. 2005-279, provides that “[s]ections 97.0585 and 741.465, Florida Statutes, as amended by this act, are subject to the Open Government Sunset Review Act of 1995 in accordance with section 119.15, Florida Statutes, and shall stand repealed on October 2, 2010, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.”