Domestic violence is a crime and continues to be major concern in NSW. It should be reported to the police. A person who is experiencing domestic violence may apply to the Local Court of NSW for an apprehended domestic violence order (‘ADVO’) or Apprehended Personal Violence Order (APVO)
What is Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence involves an abuse of power and can take the form of physical violence, sexual abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, verbal abuse, stalking and intimidation, social and geographic isolation, financial abuse, damage to property or threats to be violent in these ways.
If you fear violence or harassment from your husband or partner, you can take steps to protect yourself by applying for a protection order from a local court of NSW.
What is the difference between an ADVO and APVO?
ADVO is usually made where people involved are related, living together or are in an intimidate relationship.
APVO is made when there is a not a domestic relationship between you and the other person, for example, if they are neighbours or co-workers.
How to obtain ADVO?
You can report the violence to the police who can then make an application on your behalf, or you can make a private application for an ADVO at your Local Court. You can also get a lawyer to make an application on your behalf.
Will I need a lawyer?
If the police made the application on your behalf, the police prosecutor will represent you in court and you will not be required to have a lawyer. You will require a lawyer if you make a private application for an ADVO. To defend an ADVO, it is always advisable to obtain legal advice.
Is it a Criminal Offence to have ADVO?
No, having an ADVO against you is not a criminal offence and is not listed on the defendant’s criminal record. A breach of ADVO can lead to criminal offence. If person breaching an ADVO is found guilty of the charge, a criminal conviction can be recorded.
How long ADVO remains in force?
An ADVO remains in force for a period specified by the court. The period is to be as long as necessary, in the opinion of the court, to ensure the safety and protection of the protected person. If the court does not specify a period, the ADVO will remain in force for a period of 12 months.
Who stays in the house?
If the victim would like to remain in the house with the children, Police have the power to exclude the violent person.