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Domestic Violence Offences

Domestic violence is a widespread problem in Australia, with only a small proportion of offences ever being reported. However, there is much the Court and the law can do to address family violence at home and protect victims. 

Our experienced family lawyers in Wollongong and Oak Flats offer quality legal representation to ensure your rights are protected.

What Constitutes a Domestic Violence Offence?

A domestic violence offence typically includes physical, emotional, verbal, sexual, psychological or economic abuse as well as any other threatening or coercive behaviour or acts aimed at controlling or dominating a family member. This includes partners, ex-partners and children.

When a domestic violence offence is committed, one of the first steps for the victim is to make a family violence order. Laws differ from state to state, primarily in how a family violence order is issued and what they are called. In New South Wales, family violence orders are commonly known as Apprehended Violence Orders (AVOs).

What Is the Effect of an AVO?

An AVO is made against an individual when there is or was a domestic or personal relationship between the applicant and the respondent with allegations of violence, stalking, intimidation or threatening behaviour.

AVOs are divided into two categories:

● Domestic Violence Orders (DVO) - designed to protect people who live in a domestic relationship with the alleged perpetrator, and

Personal Violence Orders (PVO) - designed for all other categories of victims.

An AVO is not a criminal charge, but rather a civil matter. This means if the respondent complies with the conditions of the AVO, they will not be charged with a criminal offence. 

However, if the defendant in the AVO breaches the AVO, a warrant may be issued for their arrest and criminal charges may be brought against them. 

If the defendant to the AVO has been granted bail, breaching an AVO will typically constitute a breach of bail conditions, which can lead to further criminal charges.

Do You Need Help With Your Next Steps?

If you have been issued with an AVO or you are a victim who is planning to apply for a family violence order, you should seek advice from an experienced lawyer immediately. 

Our family lawyers and criminal lawyers in Wollongong and Oak Flats can help you with every aspect of a domestic violence offence, ensuring you are protected and that you understand your rights, responsibilities and options.

Get in touch with DGB lawyers today and we'll provide expert advice to help you achieve the best possible outcome.