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Domestic violence is on the rise in Australia and an area of law that is often forgotten about.
1 in 3 Australian women are found to be victims of domestic violence, with many not reporting incidents they are exposed to. Although it is a common perception that victims of domestic violence are women, applications by men are also increasing. The expert family lawyers at Stone Group Lawyers are able to assist you in the event you are a victim of domestic violence or if you need to defend an application that has been filed against you.
For more information on domestic violence as either the applicant or respondent please contact one of our family lawyers for a free 45 minute consultation on 1300 088 440.
Applying for a Domestic Violence Order
Our family lawyers are able to assist you in filing and serving an application for a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) (Also known as a Protection Order) which is designed to protect people who are in a ‘relevant’ relationship with an alleged abuser.
Domestic violence is defined under the Domestic Violence and Family Violence Act 2012 as when someone is:
- Physically or sexually abusive;
- Emotionally or psychologically abusive;
- Financially or economically abusive;
- Coercive; and/or
- Controlling or dominating
To be able to apply for a DVO you must satisfy a court that you are in a ‘relevant’ relationship with the abuser. A relevant relationship is defined as an intimate personal relationship (such as de facto, spouse, engaged or married), a family relationship (such as those who are related by blood or marriage) or an informal care relationship (such as when one person is dependent on the other person to look after them but is not a parent or commercial relationship like a nurse).
If your matter is urgent and you believe you need an order for your protection please call our office immediately or alternatively call the Domestic Violence Hotline Queensland on 1800 010 120.
If an order is made in your favour, the abuser will be ordered specific limitations on the contact they can have with you. Common examples include that the abuser cannot go within a certain distance of you and cannot call you or contact you.
Defending a Domestic Violence Order
At Stone Group Lawyers we can also help you in the event you have been served with an application against you. If you are listed as the respondent on the order you will be required to attend the Magistrates court. If you fail to attend the court for the hearing listed on the application, there is a possibility that the orders sought will be made without your consent or notice.
There are a number of options available to you if you have been served with an application against you and our family lawyers can walk you through these.
It is very important that you take the application seriously, as contravention of the orders (if made) is deemed a criminal offence and holds harsh penalties.