Domestic Violence and Family Violence

Unfortunately, it is often the case that a party or parties to a marriage or relationship experience family violence or domestic violence.

Family Violence

Under the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) family violence is defined as including behaviour such as:

  • Assault
  • Sexual assault or sexually abusive behavior
  • Stalking
  • Repeated derogatory taunt
  • Intentionally damaging or destroying property
  • Intentionally killing or injuring a pe
  • Unreasonably denying a family member financial autonomy
  • Unreasonably withholding financial support to a family member, or child, who is predominantly or entirely dependent on the person for financial support
  • Preventing a party to the marriage contacting or remaining in contact with loved ones

Domestic Violence and Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders (“ADVO”)

There is considerable overlap between the concepts of family violence in family law and domestic violence in criminal law. In the event you are experiencing domestic violence and wish for an Apprehended Domestic Violence Order (ADVO) to be made against your partner or spouse you may report the domestic violence you are experiencing to the police. It is typically advisable that you do so.

The police may then elect to pursue an ADVO application, or criminal charges, on your behalf against the perpetrator. However, on occasion, the police may elect not to pursue any such application.

In the event the police choose not to pursue an ADVO application on your behalf there are still options which remain available to you. These include pursuing a private ADVO application in the Local Court of New South Wales, or, seeking restraints (by way of injunctions) from the Federal Circuit Court of Australia or Family Court of Australia.

It is imperative that accurate reports and evidence noting and showing the family violence or domestic violence you are experiencing are prepared prior to reporting same to the police or pursuing any application in respect of such behaviour in court.

We can assist with your Family Law matter.

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