APPREHENDED VIOLENCE ORDERS
These are often combined with Charges of Assault pursuant to the Crimes Act and Stalk Intimidate pursuant to section 13 (1) Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007. If you are in a situation where you have an argument that escalates to a threat of physical violence or actual physical violence these charges may flow with the AVO.
If arrested and charged for the above bail may be granted and often the bail conditions are the same as the AVO terms. The Police will often make a provisional order. The Court in turn can grant Interim Orders pending a final determination.
In situations where an AVO has been sort the initial process is the granting of an Interim AVO. On the first appearance before the court you can do one of two things:
1 Ask that the matter be listed for a hearing,
2 Agree to the terms of the AVO without admissions. This essentially means that you are agreeing to the conditions of the AVO without agreeing to the factual allegations that brought the complaint about.
If the matter is listed for hearing the case will be adjourned for a hearing date when all witnesses will be expected to give evidence and the court will make a determination as to the validity of the claim. If the claim by the victim is found to be valid the court will make final orders usually in the terms sought.
When the AVO is in place be it the provisional, interim or the final order, you must comply with the terms of the AVO for the period that the AVO is in effect. A breach of AVO can have serious consequences. Contravention of an AVO can carry maximum penalties of $5,500.00 fine and /or 2 years Imprisonment.
Chris Kalpage has acted for many clients who have been in a domestic relationship have had AVO’s taken out and sometime later in an attempt to reconcile the victim have communicated with the party who has had the AVO taken against them. Innocently they may communicate with each other but dependent on the terms of the AVO this may be an obvious breach, or could be utilized to support evidence of a breach. The reconciliation may fail and the relationship sours and a complaint is made by the victim of a breach of AVO.
This is even more dangerous if both the victim and the person who has had the AVO taken out against them reside in the same premises. Where a minor domestic disagreement could have serious consequences such as an intimidation charge.
If the breach involves an act of violence then Section 14(4) of the Crimes (Domestic and Personal violence) Act states that unless the court otherwise orders, a person who is convicted of an offence of contravening an AVO must be sentenced to a jail term if the offence involved an act of violence against a person.
It is imperative to get advise as early as possible. Chris Kalpage has extensive experience in successfully dealing with AVO matters.