When Do I Need to File an Emergency Motion?


There are few instances that rise to the level to substantiate emergent action by the court. However, when an incident does occur that is an emergency, you need to take proper action and have the court to make a quick determination. Emergencies arise in cases involving the removal of children from the state, the endangerment of a child, appointment of a guardian, or to protect against domestic violence. If you find yourself in any of these situations, contact a Florida Family Law Attorney to take immediate action and file and Emergency Motion in your case.

The most common emergency motions arise from the custody of children. If your child is in danger of abuse or neglect inflicted upon them by the other parent, you may wish to file an Emergency Motion for Temporary Custody. Within this motion, you will request to retain full custody of the child on a temporary basis until a final hearing can be had to determine the validity of the abuse or neglect allegations, and the danger the child is in. Further, if you fear that your child will be removed from the jurisdiction, state, or country; you will need to file an Emergency Motion for Temporary Injunction to Prevent Removal of Minor child and Denial of Passport Services. The court can require a parent to surrender the child’s passport, prohibit the removal of the child, or order the parent to post a bond sufficient to serve as a financial deterrent to abduction. If the children have already been removed, you may file an Emergency Motion for Contempt and Return of Minor Child. Each of these emergency motions, may require the involvement of law enforcement and the other parent may not only face civil penalties, but criminal punishment as well. The wellbeing and safety of your child is important and may require and rise to the level of emergency action if it comes into question.

Another petition that may be filed and heard in an emergent manner is a Petition for Temporary Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence. These petitions will need to provide information regarding the relationship between you and the abuser, as well as documenting the evidence of the violence as well as the details of the incident. If the judge finds the petition to fall under Florida statutes, they may grant the temporary injunction. This injunction will remain in effect for 15 days or until a final hearing may be set on the matter. This injunction serves to protect you from any future harm and set boundaries for the contact that may be had between you and the abuser. With physical safety involved, the court may grant these temporary injunctions on an emergent basis.

Finally, if a family member is involved in the determination of incapacity, you may petition the court to appoint an emergency temporary guardian for the individual. To grant this emergency petition, “the court must specifically find that there appears to be imminent danger that the physical or mental health or safety of the person will be seriously impaired or that the person’s property is in danger of being wasted, misappropriated, or lost unless immediate action is taken.” 744.3031 If granted, the court will determine the exact powers of the emergency temporary guardian, and the authority of guardian is limited to 90 days or when a permanent guardian is appointed in the case.

If you are in need of an emergency action by the court, contact your Florida Family Law Attorney immediately. We can discuss the specifics of your case and determine the necessity of an emergency action.

Speaking to an attorney at our Florida office is free of charge, and we accept calls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Contact us at 850-307-5211 or complete an online contact form to get in touch with a member of our team today.

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