An Intervention Order is an Order made by the Court. It's designed to protect someone from harm by putting limits on the behaviour of the person subject to the Intervention Order. An Intervention Order can be put in place to protect a person from physical or sexual assault, threats, damage and interference with property, harassment, and stalking.
There are Family Violence Intervention Orders that can be made against family members or people you have been in a relationship with. Personal Safety Intervention Orders can be made against people who are not family members.
Sometimes, circumstances change after an Intervention Order has been made, or the person who has the Intervention Order against them wants to contest the conditions of the Order. In this case, you must apply to the Court to have the Intervention Order amended.
The basics of an Intervention Order
You can apply for an Intervention Order in Court if a family member or person you know is violent, threatening or abusive towards you. It sets out conditions that the person named in the Intervention Order has to follow so that they can't harm you.
- You can apply for an Intervention Order at your local Magistrates' Court.
- When applying for an Intervention Order, the party being protected is the affected family member or protected person.
- The person the Intervention Order is being made against is the respondent.
Difference between Personal Safety Intervention Orders and Family Violence Intervention Orders
Both types of Orders can set out conditions that a respondent has to abide by. If the respondent breaks one or more of the conditions in their Intervention Order, the police have the power to arrest them.
- A Personal Safety Intervention Order exists to protect the safety of people who have been assaulted, harassed, stalked or threatened where the respondent is not a family member.
- A Family Violence Intervention Order exists to protect children and adults against violence from a family member or someone they have been in a relationship with.
How Intervention Orders work
Intervention Orders are primarily there to protect people from harm. When a Court makes a decision to set out an Intervention Order, there will be certain conditions that the respondent has to stick to. An Intervention Order might include conditions that stop the respondent from:
- Committing violent acts against the protected person or family member
- Contacting the protected person or family member
- Going to an area where the protected person or family member lives
- Getting someone else to do something that the respondent is not allowed to do under the order
- Damaging property
- Threatening to damage property or commit violence against the protected person or family member
Any breach of the conditions outlined in an Intervention Order may result in the respondent being arrested and charged with a criminal offence.
When you should get an Intervention Order
You can begin an application for an Intervention Order if you are in danger or if there is the threat of violence from a family member or person you know. If you are are in immediate danger, you must dial '000' and ask for police. They will come to take immediate action and protect you against violence.
If you are not facing an immediate emergency, you can go to your local police station. The police can apply for an Interim Order by contacting the Magistrates' Court. They can also request an Intervention Order on your behalf -- and can do this even if you do not want them to. Police may apply on your behalf if you or your children's safety is at risk.
How to get Intervention Orders in Victoria
If you are over 18 when you are applying for an Intervention Order in Victoria, you need to go to the Magistrates' Court. If you are applying on behalf of your child who is under 18, or if you are between 14 and 18 years of age, you can apply for your Intervention Order at the Children's Court. You must have an address to consider aking out an Intervention Order.
In order to apply for an Intervention Order, you need to:
- Call the relevant court and make a time to have your application for an Intervention Order processed.
- Fill in an application form - you can do this at court or download it online (Magistrates' Court).
When you are at court, you will need to:
- Talk to the Court Registrar, who will ask you for information about what happened and why you are seeking an Intervention Order.
- Go through information about the respondent, including information about whether they have a weapon or gun at their use.
If you are worried about your immediate safety, you may be able to get an Interim Order. This is an immediate order made by the court until your final Intervention Order is resolved. If the Court Registrar believes your immediate safety is seriously threatened, they can issue a warrant for police to arrest the respondent.
How to contest an Intervention Order
If you want to change or contest an Intervention Order, you can make an argument against the Order itself, or against the conditions in the Order. For example, your Intervention Order may state that you cannot contact your children and you may want to challenge this.
You can contest an Intervention Order as soon as you are aware that an Order has been made against you. At Rose Lawyers, our Intervention Order Lawyers can assist you in going to court to contest an Order. They can also make sure you get the best possible outcome for your circumstances.
How Rose Lawyers can help with your Intervention Order
Family violence is complicated and difficult, and it's important to have support wherever possible. At Rose Lawyers, we can help with everything from understanding what Intervention Orders are, through to helping you lodge an application in court.