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Legal protection - obtaining an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO)

Whether or not a crime has been committed, if you know the identity of the person you fear, you can ask for a court order called an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) to protect you. An AVO can restrict the behaviour of the person you fear from, for example, contacting you, intimidating you, or accessing your home or workplace.

The person against whom an AVO is sought or made (the defendant) does not have to be charged by police. The issuing of an AVO does not, of itself, result in a criminal record or detention for the defendant. If the defendant does not comply with the conditions of the order however then they will be considered to have committed a crime.

AVOs can be changed or cancelled by applying to the court - however applications to vary or revoke AVOs that protect children must be applied for by a police officer.

LawAccess also has a new LawAssist AVO webpage aimed at helping you represent yourself in court to get an AVO.