Safe Place

The Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) is the only state-certified center for domestic violence and sexual assault services for Sarasota and DeSoto Counties. All of SPARCC's services are free and confidential, such as assistance with filing for injunctions, a shelter operating 24 hours per day/365 days per year, court advocacy, children's services, and more. SPARCC also provides safety planning, crisis counseling and emergency shelter for victims, and their families.

The SPARCC VICTIM HOTLINE ( 941) 365-1976 or toll free  (877) 365-1976 (DeSoto) is answered 24 hours per day to provide immediate response to the needs of callers. Go to SPARCC on the web at www.SPARCC.net for more information about programs and services. SPARCC has multiple locations in Sarasota and DeSoto to serve victims of domestic violence or sexual assault:

Sarasota Outreach and Administration Center
2139 Main Street
Sarasota, FL 34237
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 365-0208

Venice Outreach Office (by appointment only)
1531 Tamiami Trail South, Suite 702-A
Venice FL 34285
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 492-3752

North Port Outreach Office (by appointment only)
6919 Outreach Way, B103
North Port, FL 34287
HOTLINE (941) 365-1976
Administrative Line (941) 429-3720

Arcadia Outreach Office
107 West Oak Street, Suite 202
Arcadia, FL 34266
Toll Free HOTLINE (877) 365-1976
Administrative Line (863) 494-4948

Restraining Order Filing

Petitions for a Restraining Order are made through the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court and County Comptroller at either the Sarasota Main or Venice Branch business offices.

Sarasota Main Office
Historic Courthouse
2000 Main Street
Sarasota, FL 34237
Venice Branch Office
R.L. Anderson Administration Center
4000 South Tamiami Trail
Venice, FL 34293

 

Because of the complexities of the forms that are required to be filled out in order to seek a Restraining Order, it could take up to 45 minutes to complete all requirements. Since all paperwork must be submitted to the Court for review by 4:00 p.m., it is necessary for petitioners to submit completed paperwork to the Clerk and Comptroller's office no later than 3:40 p.m. to ensure same day review by the Court. Paperwork filed on business days after 4:00 p.m. will be provided to the Court for review the following day.

For current operating hours, please click here.

After Hours Filing

If you need to file an injunction for protection outside of normal business hours, on a holiday or weekend, contact the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office at (941) 861-5800 or go to the Sheriff's Office at 2071 Ringling Boulevard Sarasota, FL 34237 for assistance.

Restraining Order Forms

For your convenience, forms are available online through links on these pages. Forms must be signed in front of a Notary or a Deputy Clerk at the Clerk of the Circuit Court and County Comptroller's office. If you need a Deputy Clerk to attest to your signature, do not sign said documents until you are in the presence of a Deputy Clerk at the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court and County Comptroller.

There are five types of petitions for restraining orders, including Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Repeat Violence, Sexual Violence, and Stalking. Additional explanation regarding each type is available in the sections below; select a type that best corresponds to your relationship with the respondent, and fits your situation.

Please carefully review the instructions that precede each form, since selecting an incorrect form may result in additional processing time.

Restraining Order for Domestic Violence

Restraining Order for Dating Violence

Restraining Order for Repeat Violence

Restraining Order for Sexual Violence

Restraining Order for Stalking

 

Supplemental Affidavit in Support of Petition

If your petition for any of the restraining orders listed above is denied by the judge, you can use a supplemental affidavit to add facts, or clarify facts you wrote in your original petition, if you believe it necessary. Please see the instructions with the form to review the detailed requirements for the types of facts that you should consider for submission, depending on the type of petition for injunction that you filed.

This supplemental affidavit must be signed in front of a Notary Public or Deputy Clerk. After you complete and file the form, the Deputy Clerk will provide it to the Court for further consideration, in conjunction with your original petition.

Additional Restraining Order Information

Length of Validity

A restraining order shall remain in full force and effect until further order by the Court.

Motion to Modify, Dissolve, or Dismiss a Restraining Order

A Motion to Modify, Dissolve, or Dismiss the restraining order would need to be completed and filed with the Clerk of the Court and County Comptroller. The Motion form may be used if you are a party to a previously entered injunction for protection against domestic violence, repeat violence, dating violence, or sexual violence and you want the court to modify the terms of the injunction. This Motion must be signed in front of a Notary or Deputy Clerk at the Clerk of the Circuit Court and County Comptroller's office. If you need Deputy Clerk to attest your signature, do not sign said document until you are in the presence of a Deputy Clerk at the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court and County Comptroller.

Once the petitioner or respondent has completed the Motion form document, the Deputy Clerk will forward the Motion to the Family Law Judge for review. The Court may set a hearing or grant the motion. If the Court grants the Motion, the Court will prepare an Order to reflect the modifications. The original order is filed with the Clerk and Comptroller's office and both parties will be provided with a copy of the new Order.

There is no filing fee.

Documents to be filed when filing a Motion to Modify, Dissolve, or Dismiss a Restraining Order are as follows:

Motion for Extension of Restraining Order

The petitioner on a previously entered injunction for protection against domestic violence, repeat violence, dating violence, or sexual violence can request that the Court extend the injunction. A Motion for Extension must be filed BEFORE the previously entered Order expires.

There is no filing fee

Documents to be filed when filing a Motion for Extension are as follows:

Violation of the Restraining Order

The petitioner would need to complete and file an affidavit for violation, violation of injunction case information, and State Attorney intake determination report for violation of injunction with the Clerk of Circuit Court and County Comptroller. The Deputy Clerk will forward the necessary paperwork to the State Attorney's office who will review the paperwork to determine if criminal charges will be filed. If no criminal charges are to be filed, the violation paperwork will be forwarded to the Family Law Judge for review. Both parties will be provided a copy in the event that any additional Orders are entered by the Court.

Appearance Required at Injunction Hearing

You are required to appear for the hearing. If you fail to attend, you could be held in contempt of court and the Judge could dismiss the injunction.

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