​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |

Applying for an Apprehended Violence Order ​​

      There are two types of Apprehended Violence Orders. Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders (ADVO) are used where the protected person and defendant are in or have been in a domestic relationship. Apprehended Personal Violence Orders (APVO) are used in all other cases.

    Applying for an AVO through the Local ​Court or the police

    An application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) can be made in two ways:

    • by the police on your behalf (called a 'police application')
    • by you personally at your local court (called a 'private application')

    There is no cost for applying for an AVO. ​

    When an application is made, the people involved in the application are called:

    • Applicant: this is the person asking the court to make an AVO. If you made the application through the Local Court, you will be the applicant. If a police officer made the application for you, the applicant will be the police officer. The applicant may also be called 'the complainant'.
    • Protected person: this is the person who needs protection from the defendant. If you make an application to protect you from someone else, you will be the protected person and the applicant. You may also be called the 'Person in Need of Protection' (PINOP).
    • Defendant: this is the person who you want protection from and who you want the AVO to be made against. An AVO can't be made against more than one defendant. If you want protection from more than one person, a separate application should be made for each defendant.

    Police application

    The police usually have to make an application on your behalf if:

    • the police believe that a domestic violence offence has been, is being, or will be committed against you, or
    • a person stalks or intimidates you with the intention of causing you to fear physical or mental harm, or
    • an offence against a child or young person has been, is being, or will be committed.

    Alert IconIf you want an AVO against someone you are, or have been, in a domestic relationship with, you should contact the police.

    Alert IconIf the order is for a person under the age of 16, only the police can apply for an AVO on their behalf. However if you are an adult seeking an AVO, your children can be included in your own AVO.

    Step by step guide: For information about a police application, see Applying for an Apprehended Violence Order through the police - Step by step guide.

    Private application

    You may make a private application for an AVO.

    You can make a private application if you wish to represent yourself or if the police will not make an application on your behalf.

    Before you contact the Local Court about making an application for an AVO, you should consider your reasons for wanting an AVO carefully. If you make an application and you lose in court, you may be ordered to pay the defendant's costs. For more information about costs, see Costs in Apprehended Violence Order cases.

    Alert iconIt is an offence to make a false or misleading statement to a magistrate or registrar when applying for an APVO. 

    Alert iconIf you don't know whether you should make an application for an AVO, you should get legal advice.

    Step by step guide: For information about a private application, see Applying for an Apprehended Violence Order through the Local Court - Step by step guide.

    What the a​​pplicant needs to show the court

    Before applying for an AVO, you should consider whether you can prove that you need an AVO.

    The applicant will need to prove that:

    • they, or the protected person fears that another person will be violent towards them, harass them or intimidate or stalk them (this is a subjective test, which means that it is based on what the protected person actually feels), and
    • the protected person's fear is based on reasonable grounds (this is an objective test, which means it is based on whether the court believes that a person in the protected person's situation would feel the same as the protected person).

    ​In some cases, the applicant does not need to show that the protected person fears the other person (the subjective test). This applies when the person is a child.

    From 3 December 2016 , an Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (ADVO) can be made without showing that the protected person fears the other person. The magistrate must be satisfied that the person in need of protection has been subjected to a personal violence offence by the defendant and that there is a reasonable likelihood it will happen​ again and the order is necessary to protect the person. 

    Case study - Letti and CarolCase study icon

    Letti and Carol have been friends for years. A year ago, Letti started dating Carol's ex-boyfriend, Bill. Carol was very unhappy with Letti and Bill's new relationship and sent Letti nasty emails for several months. Six months ago, Letti ran into Carol at the shops. Carol started yelling at her, saying she felt betrayed. Letti walked away, but is now scared to go out in case she sees Carol.​

    Case study - Lino and Daniel Case study icon

    Lino and Daniel lived together for almost seven years. Six months ago, Lino told Daniel he wanted to take a break and moved out of their flat. About two weeks ago, they met up at a party. Lino was with his new boyfriend. Since then, Daniel started calling Lino's mobile up to 50 times a day. At first the phone calls were just annoying but then Daniel started threatening Lino. Lino also noticed Daniel hanging around outside his workplace. Last night, Daniel followed Lino to his car and attacked him. Daniel pushed Lino to the ground, punched him and grabbed his neck. A passer-by called the police and managed to pull Daniel off Lino. The police applied for an ADVO for Lino.​

    In Letti and Carol's case, the court may decide not to make a Final AVO because a great deal of time has passed since Carol sent Letti the emails and Carol's actions may not be considered threatening. Carol could talk to staff at her local court about making an application. In Lino and Daniel's case, the court may be more likely to make a Final AVO because the events happened recently and Daniel has been violent.

    Provisional, interim and final AVOs​

    The co​urt can make:

    • ​an Interim AVO – which lasts until the next hearing date, or
    • a Final AVO – which lasts for a set period of time, usually a number of years.

    Where there is urgency, the police can apply for a Provisional AVO on your behalf.

    In some circumstances a senior police officer can also make a provisional ADVO that will remain in place until the next court date. 

    For more information, see Provisional, Interim and Final Apprehended Violence Orders.

    Mandatory and additional orders

    All AVOs include some compulsory orders that may be called standard orders, mandatory orders or orders about behaviour. From 3 December 2016 these orders are listed on an AVO under a heading - 'Orders about behaviour.' You also have the option of asking for a range of additional orders. You can also have orders that are written especially for your situation. 

    For more information, see Mandatory and additional orders.

    Costs in AVO cases

    In AVO matters, the court may award costs against the unsuccessful party.

    If you are applying for an apprehended domestic violence order, the court can only award costs against you if your application was 'frivolous or vexatious'. A frivolous or vexatious application is an application that is trifling or not serious or deliberately made to cause unnecessary trouble. If the police apply for an order to protect you, a costs order cannot be made against you because you are not the applicant. 

    For more information, see Costs in Apprehended Violence Order cases.

    Recovering personal property

    If you have left personal property with the defendant, or the defendant has left personal property with you, the court can make a Property Recovery Order. 

    This order can only be made ​at the same time that a Provisional, Interim or Final AVO is made. It cannot be made after court action is finished. You should ask for an order at the court and prepare a list of the property you want to recover.

    For more information, see Recovering personal property.