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Whether you have received a Family Violence Intervention Order or a Personal Safety Order, the impact is the same – you will be unable to speak with, see or make contact with a particular person or persons. If these orders are breached, the consequences are severe and long-lasting, and can lead to criminal prosecution.

It is vital you seek legal advice as soon as possible if you are served with an Intervention Order, to give yourself the best chance at a fair outcome.

What are intervention orders?

Intervention orders (previously restraining orders) are available to assist people who are in need of help in situations of domestic violence or abuse. Abuse can be in the form of physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or economic abuse.

Types of intervention orders

There are two types of intervention orders. The first being a family or domestic violence intervention order (the laws differ across the country, depending on your state or territory). The second is a personal safety intervention order, used if you feel that you are under threat and have been affected by one of the followings by someone who is not a family member:

• Assault.
• Sexual assault.
• Harassment.
• Property damage or interference.
• Serious threats.
• Stalking.

All intervention orders are administered by the court, and a magistrate can make two types of orders. An interim order (short-term) order so that the magistrate can consider all the evidence and this type of intervention order can be made without the respondent being aware of the order. Contact the best DVO, AVO Lawyers and Intervention Orders Lawyers Melbourne.

A final order (long-term) is for those who need the protection of the order and can be issued to someone who has satisfied the court that the respondent has used violence, committed assault, or has damaged property, and may repeat the offense. A final order can also be made if there is an agreement from both parties regarding the terms of the order, or there has been no opposition to the order by the respondent, such as not being present at the hearing.

Expiration or changing of intervention orders

If you want to make an application for an intervention order, you will need to make the application in person at the local magistrate’s court.
According to the Family Law Act, if an intervention order is inconsistent with a Family Law Act order, the Family Law Act orders will override the intervention order. Intervention orders do not have an expiry date attached to them, and could last indefinitely, however, the applicant can apply to the court to change or revoke the order. If there is an expiry date, and this passes, if further protection is required, the applicant should apply for a further order.

The respondent and intervention orders

If you have had an intervention order served against you, you will be provided with the intervention order by the police detailing the contents of the order, and you will receive a summons including the court date. You must follow the conditions set out by the interim order, even if you plan to argue the final order.

If you break an intervention order then, you will be charged with a criminal offence, as the court takes a breach very seriously. You could face prison time (up to two years), a fine, or a good behaviour bond. If you have threatened the safety of the respondent, then the police will issue a warrant for your arrest.

Understanding what your intervention order means and the obligations that it imposes on you is important and that is why we offer a free initial consultation with our Principal, Glenn Thexton. The priority is ensuring that you are aware of the obligations imposed by the order and assessing your options for your next Court appearance.

If your matter relates to family violence or stalking we can help you. If you have been served with papers to attend Court or you would like to initiate an intervention order application call our office and allow one of our expert lawyers to assist you today.


Our criminal law specialist, Glenn Thexton, provides answers
to your common criminal law questions:

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