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Senate votes to double divorce fee

The Associated Press
Posted April 12 2001


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TALLAHASSEE -- The state Senate voted Thursday to double an $18 fee collected when couples file for divorce.

The fees help fund domestic violence centers. By voice vote, the Senate supported an amendment to up the fee to $36.

The amendment was on a bill (CS-SB 248) dealing with domestic violence. The Senate did not vote on that legislation but moved it to the list of measures ready for a final vote at the next meeting of the full Senate.

The underlying bill clarifies the definition of domestic violence to clarify that it can only occur between people who live together or have lived together unless the violence is between a man and a woman who have a child.

The bill also clarifies who can seek a court order telling an individual they fear to stay away. Victims of domestic violence can seek such orders; so can people who have reasonable cause to believe they are in immediate danger of becoming a victim of domestic violence.

The companion House bill (CS-HB 167) is awaiting action on the House floor.

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