What are Domestic Violence (DVO) and Personal Protection Orders?

Protection orders are orders made under the Domestic Violence and Protection Orders Act 2008 that provide a quick and flexible method of obtaining legal protection from many forms of violence, for example:

  • Physical abuse, e.g. using physical force
  • Sexual abuse, e.g. forced sexual activity
  • Psychological abuse, e.g. humiliation, intimidation

The orders not only seek to protect those people who experience violence but also those who may have cause to fear violence.They protect the applicant by ordering the respondent not to engage in conduct that amounts to domestic or personal violence.

It is an offence to breach a protection order. The maximun penalty is $55,000 or 5 years imprisonment or both.

Grounds for applying for a DVO

You can apply for a DVO if:

1. If you (applicant) live with; used to live with; are married to; are related to by blood; or were or an in a domestic relationship with.

2. The respondent has engaged in any of the following acts against you:

  • physical or personal injury
  • sexual assault
  • stalking or acts of indecency
  • damage to your property
  • trespass or burglary
  • negligent, reckless or culpable driving
  • harassment or offensive conduct, or
  • threats of any of the above.

The order can also include your children if they have experienced similar conduct, or if they are at risk of exposure to such conduct.