Domestic/Repeat Violence FAQ’s

Florida Statute 741.30 - Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another who is or was residing in the same single dwelling unit.

Your relationship with the person whom the injunction is being filed against must be that of a spouse, an ex-spouse, a relative by blood or marriage or a person who lives or has lived with you in the same dwelling as a family unit, anyone who lives or has lived with you in the same dwelling as a family unit, or anyone with whom you have had a child, with or without having lived together.

Domestic Violence must have occurred between you and this person or you must have reasonable cause to believe that domestic violence is about to occur between you and this person in order to be eligible to obtain an injunction under this statute.

An assault does not have to be physical violence. An assault can occur if someone intentionally threatens to cause you physical violence, even if they do not touch you. This threat must be by word or act and the person threatening you must have done something to make you believe that this violence is about to happen. If the person uses a deadly weapon when committing this act, it is an aggravated assault.

An act of Domestic Violence becomes a battery when someone intentionally touches you without your permission. If that person’s touching you causes you great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement, or if the person uses a deadly weapon, or if you were pregnant and the person knew or should have known, the act becomes an aggravated battery.

If someone purposefully follows or harasses you repeatedly over a period of time for no legitimate purpose, which causes you a great amount of emotional stress, they have committed the act of stalking. If in doing this they threaten your life or threaten to cause injury to you, with the intent to cause you to reasonably fear for your safety, then the act becomes Aggravated Stalking.

Florida Statute 784.046 - Repeat Violence

Anyone can be eligible to obtain an injunction under this statute if two (2) incidents of stalking, assault, battery, or sexual battery have occurred, but one (1) of the incidents must have occurred within the last six (6) months.

Domestic/Repeat Violence Injunction Process

After filling out the paperwork which has been given to you, you will be assisted in completing a petition for an injunction.

If your Petition for an Injunction for Protection is Granted

If a judge decides you meet the statutory requirements for the injunction, the judge will issue a Temporary Injunction, valid for fifteen (15) days, before you leave today. A hearing will be set within fifteen (15) days, and at that hearing, the judge will decide whether to grant a Permanent Injunction. If a Permanent Injunction is granted, it will be good indefinitely or until dissolved by the Court. A sheriff will try to serve the respondent with a copy of the pertinent court documents.

If your Petition for an Injunction for Protection is Denied

If the judge decides you do not meet the statutory requirements for the Temporary Injunction, you may still request a hearing where you and the respondent will appear before the judge. A sheriff will try to serve the respondent with a copy of the pertinent court document. However, you will not have the protection of an injunction during the time prior to the hearing.

Foreclosure FAQ’s

Where can I find a list of Foreclosure Sale dates and cases being offered for sale in Monroe County?

A list of cases scheduled for sale and the date each case is scheduled can be found in the local newspapers. (Keys Citizen & The Weekly)

Am I able to look up a piece of property by street address?

No, Properties are listed by case number. A legal description of the property is contained in the Complaint, Lis Pendens, and Final Judgment.

How can I obtain a property address for a court case?

Use the owner’s name and the legal description to search the Monroe County Property Appraiser’s website: Monroe County Property

Appraiser Office ( for a site address.

Am I able to view a property before the auction?

You may only view the property with the consent of the occupant or property owner who maintains the right of possession until a Writ of Possession is executed. An occupant or property owner who is concerned that someone may be trespassing should contact their local law enforcement agency.

When and where are foreclosure auctions held?

Foreclosure auctions are held on a weekly basis on Monday-Friday at the Clerk of the Court, 500 Whitehead Street, Key West, FL 33040 on the front courthouse steps.

Do I have to be present to bid on a foreclosure case or may I bid online?

All foreclosure auctions are held in person. You must be present to bid at the location and time described above.

Do I have to register to bid?

No, you do not have to register to bid. We will ask for ID and to see your 5% before the foreclosure auction starts.

Are foreclosure auctions publicized or advertised?

Pursuant to Sec. 45.031(2), F.S., the Notice of Sale shall be published once a week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the sale is to be held. The second publication must be at least five days prior to the sale date.

What information do I need to know about the property related to the Foreclosure?

If you are interested in a property, it is YOUR responsibility to do the research to determine the property’s address, its value, and whether liens or other encumbrances exist. The Clerk’s Office cannot advise you how to conduct the research. The Clerk’s Public Records Department may be able to offer some information regarding searching the Official Records. Their telephone number is (305) 292-3507 or email @

Where can I find case specific information about a foreclosure file?

The documents filed in foreclosure files are available online. From our website:, select Civil Case Records under the Court Records Menu. Click Accept on the Disclaimer to log in. Search by Case Number and enter the selected case number, this will display activities and documents for the case number. Click on the document icon to view a document. Foreclosure files are also available for viewing in our Public Records Department located at 530 Whitehead Street, third floor between 8:30 a.m. and 4:45 p.m. Monday through Friday. Arrangements to view the files must be made in advance by calling (305)292-3507 or email

Does the Clerk’s Office issue the Notice of sales to be published in the newspaper?

Yes, we issue and sent the Notice of Sale to the Plaintiff’s attorney for publication and the plaintiff’s attorney, or the newspaper must ensure that the original affidavit of proof of publication is filed with the clerk prior to the sale to avoid cancellation of the sale.

Who is responsible for paying the sale fee and when must this fee be paid?

The Plaintiff is responsible for payment of the $70.00 sale fee identified in Section 45.035(1), F.S. This must be paid prior to the sale. The Plaintiff must also present proof of publication pursuant to Sections 45.031(2) and 702.035(1), F.S. A notarized affidavit of proof of publication must be filed prior to the sale. For Residential Foreclosures, the sale will be canceled for non-payment of the sale fee or for lack of proof of publication.

Why do the plaintiff’s representatives often bid $100.00 for a property?

The Final Judgment contains a provision allowing Plaintiff’s a credit of up to the judgment amount; interest from the date of the judgment through the sale date; and any subsequently incurred costs, such as attorney’s fees, cost of publication, etc. Bidders may observe the Plaintiff/Plaintiff’s representative bid $100.00 during the auction. This activity corresponds with the requirement in the Final Judgment that the property be sold at auction. The Plaintiff/Plaintiff’s representative bids a minimal amount to minimize their costs in documentary stamp taxes. If other parties bid on the property, the plaintiff will typically bid up to the judgment amount and, depending upon the balance due on the mortgage and the Plaintiff’s estimate of the value of the property may bid more than the judgment amount. There are rare circumstances where the Plaintiff will allow the property to sell for less than the judgment amount, in which case the Plaintiff could motion the court for a deficiency judgment against the borrower for the difference in the sale price and the judgment amount. The borrower would then have a monetary judgment against him/her.

Is a deposit required to bid on a property at foreclosure auction?

At the time of the sale, the successful bidder must have a deposit equal of 5% of the bid amount for each property. The deposit must be in certified funds or cash and is verified during the bidding process. Wire transfers, personal checks or credit card are not accepted for the bid deposit or final payment. The deposit is nonrefundable and is applied to the sale price. If the deposit cannot be verified, the case is immediately concerned a No Sale.

What happens if I am the successful bidder at the foreclosure auction?

As indicated above, the successful bidder must remit the 5% deposit immediately at the conclusion of the sale. The deposit must be in certified funds. Wire transfer, personal checks or credit cards are not accepted for the bid deposit or final payment. The remaining balance of the bid must be paid in certified funds by 4:00 p.m. the same business day in the Key West Branch only. The successful bidder must also pay documentary stamp taxes and a fee for depositing funds into the Court’s registry. Documentary stamp taxes and registry fee are calculated on the final bid amount. The successful bidder is advised of the total amount due at the conclusion of the auction.

What forms of payment are acceptable for deposits and payments on foreclosure bids?

All deposits and payments must be made by certified funds: cashier’s check and cash. Cashier’s checks must be made payable to the Monroe County Clerk of the Court.

Are there any additional fees due upon payments of the bid amount if I am the successful bidder in a case?

Your final balance will include court registry fees. This fee is calculated at 3% of the first $500.00 and 1.5% of the remaining balance of the sale price. In addition, the Department of Revenue Documentary stamps will be due 10 days from the date of the sale. This is a tax that is calculated at the rate of $0.70 per $100 of the sale price.

What if I don’t pay the balance of my Bid?

A certificate will be issued to reflect a No-Sale of the bid which will be recorded and filed in the court file. The Plaintiff will then have to motion the court to have the foreclosure auction rescheduled. The deposit paid at the auction will not be refunded without a motion and court order from a judge.

Do I receive a clear title to the property?

The Clerk will issue a Certificate of Title after 10 days of the Sale, provided there are no pending actions related to the sale proceeding and if the Documentary Stamps are provided. This document will transfer title to the successful bidder but, it does not a guarantee of clear title. It is the buyer’s responsibility to determine whether any liens or encumbrances survive the issuance of the Certificate of Title, whether additional taxes may be due, and if further legal action is necessary.

How do I know which properties have been removed from the foreclosure sale?

Foreclosure Sales may be cancelled up to the time that the case is called up for sale. Participants may review the Clerk’s website periodically for cancellation updates which will be reflected with a comment indicating (CANCELLATION).

What happens if the successful bid is greater than the final judgment amount. Leaving an excess of funds on the case?

Surplus funds are disbursed pursuant to Section 45.032, F.S. When a property is sold at public auction, there may be surplus funds after payment to individuals who are entitled to proceeds pursuant to the final judgment. Subordinate lien holders claiming a right to surplus funds must file a claim with the clerk no later than 60 days after the sale. Property owners may claim the funds without the assistance of an attorney or other representation and without assigning their rights to another party. In addition to filing a claim for surplus, an owner filing a claim must also contact the assigned judge’s office to schedule a hearing on their claim. The final judgment in each case contains additional information regarding this process.

How does the successful bidder get a refund if their check is over the bid amount?

The Monroe County Clerk of Courts office will issue a refund for the overage within 3 weeks of the sale. The Foreclosure Clerk will provide the refund information to our Finance Department.