Family and Domestic Violence Lawyers Cairns

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Domestic Violence Lawyers Cairns

Our expert family and domestic violence lawyers specialise in helping clients apply for a Domestic Violence Protection Order (DVO). We can also assist in varying the terms or defending an application made against you. If you or someone you know is currently exposed to family or domestic violence, our team of Cairns family lawyers will help guide you through the steps to restore your peace of mind.

We help clients in Queensland with domestic violence law, offering experienced representation to protect them from violence.

What is domestic or family violence?

Queensland's Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012 defines domestic violence as a person's behaviour towards someone they have a relevant relationship with that:

  • is physically or sexually abusive; or
  • is emotionally or psychologically abusive; or
  • is economically abusive; or
  • is threatening; or
  • is coercive; or
  • in another way controls or dominates the second person to fear for their safety or wellbeing, or that of someone else.

If you are currently experiencing domestic violence and are in fear for your life or someone else's, do not hesitate to call the police on 000.

Our Cairns family lawyers will listen to your situation and provide legal advice specific to your circumstances to help you and your family feel safe again.

Obtaining a Domestic Violence Order

A Domestic Violence Order (DVO) is an official document issued by the court to stop acts of domestic violence, including threats. As with most court orders, a DVO sets out the rules that the respondent (the person committing the crime) must obey and is designed to keep the victim(s) safe. There are two types of DVOs.

Protection Order

Protection orders usually last five years but can be shorter, or extended, depending on the court's discretion. Conditions such as ensuring the respondent (the person being violent) cannot come within a certain distance of where the aggrieved (the victim) lives are set. These are legally binding and must be adhered to.

Temporary Protection Order

Police can quickly request a temporary protection order for those in immediate danger. This is similar to a protection order, but only lasts until a magistrate reviews the application for the full protection order.

A DVO will not appear on a person's criminal history. However, disobeying or breaching a DVO is a criminal offence and will show on a person's criminal history.


How Can a DVO Protect Me?

All DVOs include a standard condition that the respondent must behave and not commit domestic violence against the aggrieved or any other person named on the order. This includes children, relatives, and friends if they are at risk of violence. The rules set out in a DVO will differ depending on the situation, but can examples include the inability to:

  • approach the aggrieved at their home or work
  • stay in a home they both currently share or previously shared, even if the house is owned or rented in the respondent's name
  • approach relatives or friends
  • go to a child's school or daycare centre.

If you need domestic violence legal advice, speak to a family violence lawyer at Cairns Divorce Lawyers today.

Making Changes to a DVO

If you need to make a change to an existing protection order (including temporary protection orders) and your name appears on the current Queensland DVO, a request can be submitted.

You may need to make changes to a current order, which include:

  • adding or removing conditions
  • adding or removing people such as children, relatives, or associates
  • reducing or extending the duration of the order.

Does my DVO only apply in Queensland?

Orders issued after 25 November 2017 will apply and be enforceable in all states and territories.

For orders issued prior to 25 November 2017, it is possible to have your order declared as a national DVO.

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