Going to court - Defendant
When you are served with an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), you may have to go to court more than once.
You will need to go to court for the mention (the first court date). Then depending on what you and the applicant want to do, you may have to go to court for further mentions and a hearing.
The Local Court provides free interpreters in AVO matters. For more information, see Arranging interpreters.
There are also support services available to assist people with a disability attending court for an AVO matter. For more information, see Arranging access for people with disabilities.
At the mention the court will ask you and the applicant what you want to do. Depending on what you and the applicant want to do the magistrate may make some orders.
Before the mention, you should consider:
- Who can represent you
- What to take to the mention
- What might happen at the mention
- What the applicant might ask for
- What you need to do.
For more information, see The mention.
Preparing your evidence
If you don't agree to the Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) being made, the Court may make directions (orders) for statements to be filed and served to prepare for the hearing.
For more information on preparing written evidence, see Written statements and evidence.
Your case will then be listed for another mention.
After the Court has checked that you and the applicant have followed directions to file statements, it may list your case for a hearing. The hearing may be in a couple of weeks or months, depending on how busy the court is.
When your case is listed for hearing, the Court will need to know:
- if you or any of your witnesses need interpreters
- if any of your witnesses are children
- any dates that you or your witnesses are not available to go to court.
Step by step guide: Preparing for the hearing.
At the hearing, the Court will read any statements that have been filed and consider the evidence that is presented.
It is important to prepare for the hearing so that you can tell the Court why you don't agree with the application and answer any questions you may be asked.
For more information, see Arguing your case.
Step by step guide: Presenting your case at the hearing.
After reading any statements and hearing all the evidence, the Court will either:
- make an Final AVO, or
- dismiss the application.
For more information, see The decision.