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Family Law

The Family Law division of the Clerk’s Office is responsible for the customer service, review, processing, data entry of legal documents pertaining to all family law related cases. Family law has jurisdiction over domestic relation matters such as:

  • Dissolution of marriage or annulments
  • Domestic violence, repeat violence, stalking, dating violence, and sexual violence injunctions
  • Adoptions
  • Emancipation of a minor
  • Paternity
  • Change of name
  • Child or spousal support
  • Temporary custody and custodial care
  • Termination of parental rights
  • Foreign judgments

The Clerk’s Office is not permitted to give legal advice on which forms to use or how to complete forms. Certain forms or form packets are available in our office for a fee. For your convenience, additional information concerning forms, family laws and opinions may be found at https://www.flcourts.org/Resources-Services/Court-Improvement/Family-Courts and https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/

Domestic/Sexual Violence & Other Restraining Order Injunctions

If you are in immediate danger, please call 911 or the Sheriff’s Office at (904) 966-2276. Domestic Violence forms can be found at www.FlCourts.gov

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find an attorney?
The Florida Bar is able to provide legal referrals. You can contact the Florida Bar at 850-561-5600 or at https://www.floridabar.org/ . Click on the “Find a Lawyer” button then click on the “Lawyer Referral Service Site” link.

What if I can’t afford an attorney?
Legal assistance may be available to you by visiting www.FlCourts.gov. Three Rivers Legal Services offers free legal help to low-income eligible clients. You may call the legal helpline at 1-866-256-8091 or 352-372-0519 or visit their website at www.trls.org.

Can I represent myself in court?
Yes, you may represent yourself in court (called “Pro Se”) but you must understand family law cases are governed by the Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure which must be followed (Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure). Additionally, there are rules of court which must be followed (https://www.floridabar.org/rules/ctproc/).  As in all matters involving the law, if you do not feel fully comfortable or qualified to represent yourself, you may want to consider obtaining the services of a competent lawyer. Click Here for Turbo Court Self Help. 

Do I need an attorney to file an injunction for protection against domestic violence?
No. If you, your child or someone you care about is a victim of abuse, you may apply for a “Temporary Injunction for Protection” from the Court. An injunction for protection, also referred to as a restraining order, is a court order which places restrictions on a person who has committed acts of violence against another person as defined below. The Injunction for Protection may include, but is not limited to, provisions which restrain the abuser from further acts of violence; order the abuser to leave your household; prevent the abuser from coming to your home, school, business, or place of employment; award custody of minor children and order the abuser to pay support. Completed paperwork will be accepted at the Family Law division of the Clerk’s Office until 5:00 pm. Emergency cases after 5:00 p.m. should be referred to Bradford County Sheriff’s Office (904-966-2276).

Are Adoption cases confidential?
Yes. Adoptions are confidential. All papers and records pertaining to the adoption, including the original birth certificate, are confidential and subject to inspection only upon order of the court.

Who can file a Paternity case?
Paternity cases can be filed by any woman who is pregnant or has a child, any man who has reason to believe that he is/is not the father of a child, or any child may bring proceedings in the Circuit Court to determine paternity when paternity has not been established by law or otherwise.

If you have a question please contact our office at (904) 966-6280.