​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 |

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Defending an Apprehended Violence Order

If you are named as a defendant in an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) you need to consider how you are going to respond to the application. How you respond will determine what you need to do next. 

This section has information about:

    ​Responding to ​an application for an Apprehended Violence Order

    If you have been served with an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), you can:

    • ask for an adjournment to get legal advice
    • give the Court an undertaking
    • consent (agree) to the AVO (with or without admissions)
    • make a cross application
    • oppose the application
    • ask for a Property Recovery Order
    • do nothing. 

    Alert IconIf you are under 18 years of age, your case will be dealt with differently. For more information, see Apprehended Violence Orders against children.

    If you have also been charged with a criminal offence, for example assault, when you go to court you will need to respond to the AVO and the criminal charge.

    This section covers:

    • Who applied for the Apprehended Violence Order
    • What the applicant needs to show the court
    • Being served with an application for an Apprehended Violence Order
    • How to respond to an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Provisional and Interim Apprehended Violence Orders
    • Final Apprehended Violence Orders
    • Mandatory and additional orders
    • Costs in Apprehended Violence Order cases
    • Recovering your personal property
    • Charged and Apprehended Violence Orders
    • Making a cross application. 

    For more information, see Responding to an application for an Apprehended Violence Order.

    Going to court

    The first court date is called a 'mention'. The magistrate will want to know:

    • if the applicant still wants to go ahead with the application
    • how you want to respond to the application.

    If the police applied for the Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) on behalf of the protected person, they will represent the protected person. 

    How you and the applicant respond will determine what orders the Court will make. 

    This section covers:

    • The mention
    • Preparing your evidence
    • The hearing
    • The decision. 

    For more information, see Going to court.

    After court

    At the end of your case, the Court will either:

    • make a Final Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), or
    • dismiss the application. 
    If the application is dismissed, the applicant may:
    • appeal the decision to the District Court within 28 days
    • re-apply for an AVO. 

    If a Final AVO is made against you, you may apply to:

    • appeal the decision to the District Court within 28 days. 
    • annul the AVO
    • vary (change) or revoke (cancel) the AVO. 

    If an AVO is made against you, you are not given a criminal record. However, if you breach an AVO it is a criminal offence. An AVO may also place some restrictions on you, such as stopping you from having a firearms or security licence, or working with children.

    This section covers:

    • Consequences of an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Consequence of breaching an Aprehended Violence Order
    • Varying (changing) or revoking (cancelling) an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Interstate orders
    • Application for Annulment
    • Appeals
    • Victims Support Scheme. 

    For more information, see After court.

    Apprehended Violence Orders against children

    Apprehended Violence Orders (AVOs) against children are dealt with in the Children's Court and different rules apply in these cases. 

    This section covers:

    • Responding to an application for an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Going to court for an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Withdrawing an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Varying (changing) or revoking (cancelling) an Apprehended Violence Order
    • Appeals.

    Case study

    ​​​Case study - Saabeah, Didier and MarkCase study icon

    Mark has lived in his house for 20 years. Saabeah and Didier recently moved into the house next door. A few months ago Mark started doing some work around his house, and has been placing the building rubble and garbage in his yard next to the fence. Saabeah and Didier have sent Mark a letter accusing him of throwing the garbage over their fence. Mark is really angry and frustrated. He believes Saabeah and Didier should mind their own business. Mark wrote them a letter warning them to leave him alone. On Tuesday Mark was served with an application for an Apprehended Personal Violence Order. Mark has to go to court in two weeks and doesn't know what to do.​

    Neighbours arguing over dumped rubbish

    Further inf​ormation

    Legal Aid NSW - Is someone asking the Court to make an AVO against you?

    NSW Communities & Justice - ADVOs: Changes to Duration Factsheet

    NSW Communities & Justice - Domestic Violence