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If you have been served with an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) there are many things you need to consider.
If you are under 18 years of age, your case will be dealt with differently. For more information, see Apprehended Violence Orders against children.
An application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) can be made by:
From 3 December 2016, the Children's Court in care proceedings can make an AVO to protect children.
When an application is made, the people involved in the application are called:
To get an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), the applicant will need to prove that:
The applicant doesn't need to prove that you have been violence towards them or the protect person to get an AVO.
In some cases, the applicant does not need to show that the protected person actually fears the other person. The Court can make an AVO even if the protected person doesn’t actually fear you, if the protect person:
Case study - Lette and Carol
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
Lino and Daniel lived together for almost seven years. Six months ago, Lino told Daniel he wanted to take a break and Lino 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 Lino's neck. A passer-by called the police and managed to pull Daniel off Lino. The police applied for an Apprehended Domestic Violence Order 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 has not acted in a threatening manner. In Lino and Daniel's case, the Court is more likely to make an AVO because the events happened recently and Daniel has been violent.
Service is the process of giving or sending court documents to a person to notify them of those documents.
If you are the defendant in an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) matter, you must be served personally with the application for an AVO. You must be told that an application has been filed against you and that you have to go to court.
If an AVO has already been made against you, you must be served with a copy of the AVO because you must be told if there are court orders that you must follow. If you are not served with a copy of the AVO you can’t be convicted for breaching the AVO, unless you were at court when the order was made.
This section covers:
For more information, see Service of documents.
There are a number of ways that you can respond to an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO):
For more information, see How to respond to an application for an Apprehended Violence Order.
Before responding to an application for an AVO you should consider:
While an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) is being decided, there are two types of temporary AVOs that can be made to protect the protected person:
The police can apply for an urgent Provisional AVO.
For more information, see Provisional and Interim Apprehended Violence Orders.
A court can make a Final Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) if:
Once a Final AVO is made there are consequences of having the AVO and of breaching it.
For more information, see Final Apprehended Violence Orders.
There are two different types of orders that may be included in an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO):
All AVOs include mandatory orders that may be called standard orders or 'Orders about behaviour'.
The applicant can also ask for a range of additional orders. The applicant can also have orders that are written especially for their matter.
For more information, see Mandatory and additional orders.
In Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) matters, the Court may award costs against the unsuccessful party.
If the Court dismisses the application, you can ask the Court to make an order that the protected person or the police pay your legal costs.
Legal costs include lawyer's fees and expenses such as conduct money for witnesses. Legal costs do not include lost wages.
For more information, see
Costs in Apprehended Violence Order cases.
If you have left personal property with the protected person, or the protected person has left property with you, the Court can make a Property Recovery Order.
A Property Recovery Order can only be made at the same time that a Provisional, Interim or Final Apprehended Violence Order is made. It can't be made after the case is finished. You should ask for the order at court and prepare a list of the property you want to recover.
For more information, see Recovering personal property.
If an application for an Apprehended Violence Order has been made against you, you may also have been charged with a criminal offence, for example assault.
For more information, see
Charges and Apprehended Violence Orders.
If you have been served with an application for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), but you also fear the protected person, you may want to make a cross application against them.
The Court will treat your application like a normal application for an AVO.
For more information, see Cross applications.
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