Apprehended Violence Orders Lawyers

Our criminal lawyers specialise in defending Apprehended Violence Orders and Domestic Violence offences.

We fight for our clients facing domestic violence allegations in defended hearings, sentences, and bail applications.

Our criminal lawyers have a proven track record with 500+ 5 star Google reviews across our three offices in Sydney CBD, Parramatta, and Blacktown.

You can read some of our 500+ 5 star Google reviews here or scroll down to read more.

Best AVO and Domestic Violence lawyers in Sydney

Our award-winning criminal lawyers, with 500+ 5 star Google reviews, fight Apprehended Violence Orders and domestic violence charges. We have a proven track record of obtaining dismissals, not guilty verdicts, no convictions, and bail.

Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) and Domestic Violence (DV) charges are often unfair, unnecessary and based on untrue allegations. 

Australian Criminal Law Group knows how to defend Apprehended Violence Orders and domestic violence offences. We do not tell our clients to plead guilty to domestic violence offences or consent to AVOs if we think that we can get them dismissed. Breaching an Apprehended Violence Order is a serious criminal offence. Apprehended Violence Orders should not be agreed to if you dispute the police allegations that have led to one being made.

Our criminal lawyers have a proven track record of representing people charged with domestic violence offences and subject to Apprehended Violence Orders.  who leave the court found not guilty, or with no conviction and criminal record.

Australian Criminal Law Group are based in SydneyParramatta and Blacktown and represent clients from across the broader Sydney area. 

What is an Apprehended Violence Order or AVO?

An Apprehended Violence Order is an order made by a court against you where you allegedly make another person (known as the person in need of protection or PINOP) fear intimidation, harassment or for their safety.

All Apprehended Violence Orders provide you must not:

  • Assault, threaten, molest, harass, or interfere with the protected person.
  • Stalking or threaten the protected person; and
  • Intentionally or recklessly destroy or damage any property belonging to the protected person.

Other types of conditions that may be imposed include:

  • A condition that prevents you going to where the protected person lives (even if it is your home too), works, or studies.
  • A condition that you cannot approach or contact the protected person at all.
  • A condition that you cannot approach or contact the protected person within 12 hours of consuming alcohol or illicit drugs.

Is an Apprehended Violence Order a criminal offence?

An Apprehended Violence Order is not a criminal charge. It will not give you a criminal record. However, breaching an Apprehended Violence Order is a serious criminal offence that can lead to a criminal record and/or imprisonment.

Although an Apprehended Violence Order is not a criminal offence, there can be consequences beyond the making of the AVO itself. These include:

  • Any firearms you have must be given in to the police and you cannot get a new firearms licence until 10 years after the Apprehended Violence Order has ended.
  • An Apprehended Violence Order can also affect your licence to work as a security officer, a police officer or other specific jobs.
  • If the Apprehended Violence Order includes children the Commission for Children and Young People may be notified and your ability to work with children may be affected.

What happens if I breach an AVO?

Where an Apprehended Violence Order is made against you and you are accused of breaching the Apprehended Violence Order, you will be charged with a criminal offence. If you are found guilty you may be subject to considerable penalties. This includes a criminal record. The maximum penalty for breaching an Apprehended Violence Order is a fine of $5500.00 and/or two years imprisonment.

When an Apprehended Violence Order is breached with an act of physical violence the starting point in sentencing you will be imprisonment.

What is the law in relation to Apprehended Violence Orders?

For the court to make an Apprehended Violence Order against you, the police must prove on the balance of probabilities:

  • The protected person fears that you will be violent towards them, harass or intimidate them or stalk them (this is a subjective test, which means that it is based on what the protected person feels); and
  • The protected person’s fear is based on reasonable grounds (this is an objective test, which means it is based on whether the court believes that a person in the protected person’s situation would feel the same as the protected person).

The fear is at the time the Apprehended Violence Order is being dealt with in court.

How long does an Apprehended Violence Order last?

The period of an Apprehended Violence Order is what the court believes is necessary to ensure the safety and protection of the protected person. The court will usually specify the period of the Apprehended Violence Order. If no expiry is specified, the order remains in force for 12 months from the date it was made.

Can an AVO be varied or revoked?

An Apprehended Violence Order can be varied or revoked if there has been a change in circumstances. The application needs to set out the reasons the person wants to vary or revoke the Apprehended Violence Order. 

Applications to vary or amend an Apprehended Violence Order need to be submitted to a local court. This can be done by a police officer, yourself or the protected person. Where the protected person is a child only the police can apply for the Apprehended Violence Order to be varied or revoked.

Can I apply for an Apprehended Violence Order?

You can apply for an Apprehended Violence Order by attending the local court and filling out an application. If you apply for an Apprehended Violence Order and the application fails, the costs can be awarded against you. It is best to apply for an Apprehended Violence Order with the assistance of one of our criminal lawyers.

What is Domestic Violence?

A “domestic violence offence” means an offence committed by a person against another person with whom the person who commits the offence has (or has had) a domestic relationship, being:

(a) a personal violence offence, or

(b) an offence (other than a personal violence offence) that arises from substantially the same circumstances as those from which a personal violence offence has arisen, or

(c) an offence, other than a personal violence offence, in which the conduct that constitutes the offence is domestic abuse.

A “domestic relationship” with another person exists if the person:

(a) is or has been married to the other person, or

(b) is or has been a de facto partner of that other person, or

(c) has or has had an intimate personal relationship with the other person, whether or not the intimate relationship involves or has involved a relationship of a sexual nature, or

(d) is living or has lived in the same household as the other person, or

(e) is living or has lived as a long-term resident in the same residential facility as the other person and at the same time as the other person (not being a facility that is a correctional centre within the meaning of the Crimes (Administration of Sentences) Act 1999 or a detention centre within the meaning of the Children (Detention Centres) Act 1987 ), or

(f) has or has had a relationship involving his or her dependence on the ongoing paid or unpaid care of the other person (subject to section 5A), or

(g) is or has been a relative of the other person, or

(h) in the case of an Aboriginal person or a Torres Strait Islander, is or has been part of the extended family or kin of the other person according to the Indigenous kinship system of the person’s culture.

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