A Guide To Intervention Orders (IVOs) | Rose Lawyers

A Guide To Intervention Orders (IVOs)

Everything you need to know about an IVO

Rose Lawyers on 22 May 2015

An Intervention Order, sometimes called an IVO or AVO, is an order made by a magistrate to protect a person from the actions of another.

It is a way that someone, known as the Applicant or ‘protected person’, can be legally protected from another person, known as the Respondent.

Intervention Orders are commonly made to protect people from stalking, or physical or verbal abuse.

The order may restrict the Respondent from contacting or approaching the Applicant for a certain amount of time.

Are you looking for a Lawyer to help you understand an IVO? Call us on 03 9878 5222 to discuss your situation.

Types of Intervention Orders

There are two types of IVO:

Intervention Order – In this case, the Respondent is not usually related to the Applicant. This type of IVO is made to the Court by the Applicant.

Family Violence Intervention Order – The Respondent is related to the protected person, known as the ‘affected family member’ or AFM. This order can be applied for by the AFM, but can also be made by the police. The police do not need the consent of the AFM to apply for the IVO.


IVO conditions

An IVO will contain some standard conditions for the Respondent to meet.

These are legally binding conditions to not commit violence against the Applicant, or get someone else to commit violence against the Applicant.

There are other conditions which will be written according to the certain circumstances of the application. These will include the required distance the Respondent must keep from the home or business of the Applicant, or whether or not the Respondent can make contact with the Applicant.

Although it is not required, hiring a lawyer may help you understand your own rights and responsibilities and achieve an better outcome for you.

Applying for an IVO

Who can apply?

Anyone can make an IVO against someone else, if they have a suitable reason to do so.

An IVO can be made against someone if the Applicant has a reason to be afraid that the other person will hurt them. The Applicant will need to be able to explain to the Court the reasons for the Order, and be able to provide the address of the Respondent.

In the case of a family violence IVO, the police can make an application to protect someone, even without their contest. The affected family member can request that the Court not make the IVO, but the Court can choose to ignore this request.

How do I apply for an IVO?

victoria magistrate logo
You must go to a Victorian Magistrates Court, or in the case of family violence, an application can be made by the police.

If the application is granted, you will receive an interim Intervention Order. This is a temporary measure which is effective until a Court hearing. This hearing will usually be scheduled about a week after the application is made.

At the Court hearing, a magistrate will either grant or dismiss an IVO, as well as give an opportunity for the Respondent to consent or contest.

Do I need a Lawyer?

You can always represent yourself in Court without a Lawyer.

However, if you plan to contest the IVO, you will usually need a Lawyer if you want to cross-examine the Applicant.

Receiving an IVO

I have an IVO made against me. What does this mean?

If you are notified of an IVO being made against you, as the Respondent you have four options:

  • Do Nothing – You can choose to take no action, and the Order will likely be made against you.
  • Agree to the Order – You can choose to admit that the allegations made by the Applicant are true. By attending the hearing, you may be able to negotiate some of the conditions of the order.
  • Consent to the Order, Without Making Admissions – You can agree to the IVO being made against you, without agreeing to the allegations of the Applicant. By attending, you may be able to negotiate some of the terms.
  • Contest the Order – By contesting, the matter will be adjourned and you will need to attend Court at a later date to make your case.

Will I get a criminal record?

lawyer helping

No, an IVO is a civil matter, not a criminal one. Receiving an IVO will not affect a criminal record.

However, the Order outlines certain conditions which must be met. If you breach these conditions, then it is an offence and a criminal matter.

Do I need a Lawyer?

You can represent yourself in Court.

If you plan to do nothing, or plan to agree to the Order, then a Lawyer may not be necessary.

However, if you plan to contest the Order, or want to negotiate some of the conditions of the Order, then having a Lawyer will improve the chances of reaching a desired outcome.



An Intervention Order is a Court order which puts restrictive conditions on a person, the Respondent, so that another person, the Applicant, is protected.

If it’s in relation to family violence, the police can apply for an IVO on behalf of the affected family member.

An IVO can be applied for at a Magistrates Court, and an interim order will apply until a scheduled Court hearing. The Respondent will have a chance to respond to the IVO at the hearing.

Although it is not required, hiring a Lawyer may help you understand your own rights and responsibilities and achieve an better outcome for you.

Looking for a Lawyer? Contact us today to discuss your situation.

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