Legal Advice

Family & Domestic Violence Orders

Family Violence Order

A Family Violence Order (including an Interim Order) is generally made under a prescribed law of a state or territory to protect a person from family violence.

Family violence orders are called different things in different states, such as:

  • Protection Orders (QLD and ACT)
  • Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (NSW)
  • Intervention Orders (VIC)
  • Restraining Orders (NT, SA and WA)
  • Restraint Orders (TAS).

Under the Family Law Act, all state and territory orders are described as Family Violence Orders. Such orders may forbid one parent from coming within a set distance of another parent, for example, harassing them.

Sometimes the Family Court or the Federal Circuit Court makes an order for an injunction that is inconsistent with the state or territory order (see Sections 68P and 68Q of the Family Law Act).

Under the Family Law Act, family violence orders can allow parties to come into contact with each other only for:

  • delivering or collecting a child who is spending time with a parent or other person (as provided by the Family Law Act), or
  • enabling parties to attend family counselling, family disputes resolution, a family consultant meeting, or other Court events during family law proceedings.

A Court must ensure that any orders made:

  • have regard to any family violence order, and
  • do not expose a person to an unacceptable risk or family violence.

Section 60CF deals with informing a Court of relevant family violence orders.

Other relevant parts of the Act include Division 11, which concerns resolving inconsistencies between orders for spending time with children and state family violence orders; ensuring orders for spending time with children do not expose people to family violence; and respecting a child's right to spend time with a parent or other person.

Child protection orders are different to family violence orders. They are made by a state Children's Court when it is believed that a child is in need of protection. However, children can sometimes be included on family violence orders made for a parent.

Domestic Violence Order

Domestic and family violence does not discriminate and can affect anyone in the community, regardless of their gender, sexual identity, age, race, culture, economic status, education, religion, or ethnicity. The team at Bruce Dulley Family Lawyers is experienced in matters of Domestic Violence and can provide sensitive, qualified advice for your protection.

Domestic and family violence comes in many forms, is not limited to physical violence and can include a wide range of abusive behaviours and is not necessarily physical abuse. Controlling behaviours, harassment, and even economic control can also be forms of domestic or family violence that can have detrimental effects on you, your family and, or, your children. Domestic Violence occurs when the person you are in a relationship with is:

  • physically or sexually abusive towards you;
  • emotionally, spiritually, culturally or psychologically abusive towards you;
  • verbally, socially abusive towards you;
  • financially abusive towards you;
  • threatening or destructive towards your property;
  • stalks you;
  • is coercive; or
  • in any other way controls or dominates you, causing you to fear for your safety and wellbeing or that of someone else.

The legislation provides protection from violence for people in the following relationships:

  • an intimate personal relationship (married, de facto, engaged, dating, registered relationship);
  • an informal care relationship (where a person is dependent on another for help in an activity of daily living); or
  • a family relationship (of a child, your relatives, a parent or former parent).

It should be noted that neighbours, flatmates and children under 18 who are violent towards parents are not protected under The Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012.

In order for the Court to make a Protection Order, the legislation requires that;

  1. an act of domestic or family violence has occurred; and
  2. the person is likely to commit an act of domestic or family violence again.

If you are genuinely fearful for your personal safety and, or, the safety of your children and family because of the abusive behaviour from your former partner, we can make an application for a Protection Order for you.

If you and, or, your family are in any immediate danger, you should contact the Queensland Police immediately.

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Domestic and family violence is never acceptable and our team at Bruce Dulley Family Lawyers can advise you of the appropriate orders you should seek to ensure both you and your family are safe.

Other aspects relevant to Domestic and family violence include issues of parenting and property. It may also be possible to seek an order that the offender of the abuse be removed from the home and you have the sole use and occupancy.

If you are concerned for your safety, our team can assist you with obtaining a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) and provide Court representation on your behalf if necessary. We understand that obtaining a DVO can be a traumatic experience and we will endeavour to resolve your matter with confidence and care.

Contact us to discuss your matter and requirements and to find out how we can help you.