An Apprehended Violence Order (AVO)
An Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) is an Order made by the Court that prohibits certain behaviour of the defendant. An Apprehended Violence Order is designed to protect the person making the complaint from future harassment, intimidation, stalking or violence.
An Apprehended Violence Order often states that the person cannot assault, harass, threaten, stalk, intimidate, or go within a certain distance of the home or workplace of the person lodging the complaint.
There are 2 types of Apprehended Violence Orders:
- Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (ADVO).
An Apprehended Domestic Violence Order as taken against a family member, spouse or ex spouse / intimate partner.
- Apprehended Personal Violence Order (APVO).
An Apprehended Personal Violence Order is used for protection from someone other than family members or spouses / ex spouses – e.g neighbours, work colleagues or random strangers, etc
If an Apprehended Violence Order has been made against you, it is wise to seek legal advice from Lawyers expert in Domestic Violence matters.
What are the circumstances for a Court to issue an Apprehended Violence Order?
The Court may issue an Apprehended Violence Order if it feels that there is a likelihood of, or that the person lodging the complaint has reasonable grounds to fear:
- The defendant shows a high propensity for violence
- Harassment, stalking or intimidation from the defendant
Can a defendant object to an Apprehended Violence Order?
A defendant may object to an Apprehended Violence Order, in which case, the matter will be adjourned for defended hearing at a later date. It is common that an interim Apprehended Violence Order will be issued until the final hearing.
What are the Penalties for Breaching an Apprehended Violence Order?
It is a criminal offence for the defendant to knowingly breach an interim or final Apprehended Violence Order. The maximum penalty on conviction is a $5,500 fine or two years imprisonment or both. If the breach constitutes an act of violence and the defendant is at least 18 years of age, it is likely that the defendant will be sentenced to a gaol term.
What are the Possible Defences for the Charge of Breaching an Apprehended Violence Order?
To be charged with the offence of Contravene an Apprehended Violence Order, police must prove that the defendant knowingly breached one or more of the conditions of the apprehended violence order.
As an Apprehended Violence Order is served on the defendant when it is made by the Court, it is very unlikely that the defence of not knowing about the order will be effective. Possible defences include duress, necessity or self defence.
The charge of Contravene an Apprehended Violence Order is a serious criminal offence with the possibility of a gaol sentence and for that reason, you need expert legal representation from criminal lawyers who know really understand the laws around Domestic Violence and Apprehended Violence Orders.
At Brazel Moore Lawyers, we have Lawyers experienced in the criminal law who are able to help you in Domestic Violence proceedings whether as a Complainant or a Defendant.