Applying

An application can be made to a Magistrates’ Court by:

  • You
  • A solicitor, friend, support worker who is authorised by you
  • A police officer
  • A parent/guardian (for children

The application can be hand written at the court. It is useful to bring a photograph of your partner with you to help the police serve the documents.

You need to complete an application and an affidavit along with an information sheet.

Does it cost me anything to apply for an order?

The Court does not charge any fees for making an application for a protection order. However, you should be aware that the Court may order you to pay another person’s expenses incurred as a result of your application if the Court considers your application to be frivolous, vexatious or not to have been made honestly.

After hearing evidence, a Magistrate can make an urgent (or interim) order for up to ten days, or longer in some circumstances. During this time your partner is served with the documents. You both then attend the court at a later date for a conference. At this stage you can apply to extend the order for up to two years. If you feel unsafe at the court talk to the staff and they will make suitable arrangements for your safety.

Types of order

Various orders can be made. For example, an order can:

  • Prohibit contact with you at home or work.
  • Limit contact (for example, when the other person is drunk).
  • Prohibit acting in an offensive manner
  • Prohibit damage to property
  • The order can be written to suit your situation.

Breaching an order

The order is a civil order but breach of an order may be a criminal offence. Contact the police immediately on 13 14 44 if there is breach of this order.If the police are satisfied that the respondent has breached the order, the respondent may be charged with a criminal offence. If they are convicted then they will have a criminal record.