An Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) is an order made by the court that prohibits the defendant from certain behaviour, such as harassment, stalking, intimidation, violence or the threat of violence.
The purpose of an AVO is to provide protection from this behaviour in the future – it usually prohibits a person from behaving in such a manner, or going within a certain distance of the home, or workplace, of the person lodging the complaint.
The Court can make an AVO if a defendant consents to an AVO being made, or if evidence is heard proving that a person is in need of protection or fears violence or harassment by the defendant. The court also has to be satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for these fears in order to make an AVO.
There are 2 types of Apprehended Violence Orders:
- Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (ADVO)
– taken against a family member, including spouses, ex-spouses and intimate partners (including de facto relationships) and
- Apprehended Personal Violence Order (APVO)
– for protection from someone other than family members.
If you need to obtain an Apprehended Violence Order, or if somebody has sought, or obtained, an Apprehended Violence Order against you, it is recommended that you seek legal advice from an experienced solicitor, immediately.
What happens if someone tries to obtain an Apprehended Violence Order against you?
You can object to an Apprehended Violence Order being made against you and can have the matter adjourned for trial at a later date. Under these circumstances, an interim AVO can be issued until the trial date.