Family violence intervention orders and the criminal law
If you have any concerns about an application for a Family Violence Intervention Order or Safety Notice, call Slades & Parsons Solicitors. If police allege you have breached such a notice or order, speak to one of our experienced criminal lawyers. It is also important to seek advice early and prepare your case if you have to attend court.
What is family violence?
The Act gives a broad definition of family violence, including:
(a) behaviour by a person towards a family member of that person if that behaviour is
physically or sexually abusive; or
emotionally or psychologically abusive; or
iii. economically abusive; or
in any other way controls or dominates the family member and causes that family member to feel fear for the safety or wellbeing of that family member or another person; or
(b) behaviour by a person that causes a child to hear or witness, or otherwise be exposed to the effects of, behaviour referred to in paragraph (a).
What the police can do:
Police can direct you to remain at a place or to go and remain at place or to remain in the company of a police officer.
If you fail to comply with a reasonable direction, that gives police the power to apprehend and detain you.
Police who respond to an incident may apply for a Family Violence Safety Notice under certain circumstances.
They can arrest you if you contravene a Family Violence Safety Notice or breach a Family Violence Intervention Order.
Finally, it is important to understand that police can start applications despite the wishes of your family members.
Criminal offences apply for breaches
Summary offences are for breaches of Safety Notices and Intervention Orders.
Indictable offences are for contravening Family Violence Safety Notices and Intervention Orders intending to cause harm or fear, and for persistent contravention of such notices and orders.
If police charge you with a breach of a Safety Notice or Intervention Order, or serve you with a Safety Notice or Intervention Order, act quickly and seek legal advice.