A Violence Restraining Order can be issued by the Magistrates Court after an Application is completed and filed by a party seeking the Order, or by the Police on behalf of a party (the protected party). The Application will then be heard by a Magistrate and, in some circumstances, can initially be heard in the absence of the other party.
A Violence Restraining Order can be made to prevent another person from committing an act of abuse, breaching the peace, causing fear or intimidating another person or damaging property. The Court can make the Order if satisfied that there has been an act of abuse or the threat of an act of abuse and that, without the Order, the behavior is likely to continue.
If an Order is made, initially it is referred to as an Interim Violence Restraining Order. The Police or Court staff will personally serve the Interim Violence Restraining Order upon the other party. After service is effected, the Order becomes binding and any breach of the Order should be reported to the Police.
After the Order has been served, the other party (the person bound by the Order) has 21 days to lodge a written objection at the Magistrates Court. Following this, the Application will be relisted for hearing and the person bound can oppose the making of a Final Violence Restraining Order. Further, an Application for a Violence Restraining Order can be resolved by the party bound agreeing to enter an ‘Undertaking’. An Undertaking is a written promise to the Court which often mirrors the wording of a Violence Restraining Order which can remain in place for a specified period of time. Unlike breaching a Violence Restraining Order, breaching an Undertaking does not involve the Police, and it is unlikely that any criminal proceedings will flow from the breach. A breach of an Undertaking however can be used as evidence in future proceedings to obtain a Violence Restraining Order.
A Violence Restraining Order is a serious Order of the Court. A breach of the Order can result in significant criminal penalties and criminal conviction. Perth Family Lawyers are able to assist our clients in providing advice regarding Violence Restraining Orders and representation at court. Further information in respect of Violence Restraining Orders can also be obtained by attending at the local Magistrates Court.