An intervention order is a court order that is issued to protect individuals from violence, abuse, harassment, or stalking by another person. This order can be obtained by the police on behalf of a victim, or by the victim themselves through the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria.
What are the types of intervention orders?
In Victoria, there are two main types of intervention orders being Family Violence Intervention Orders (FVIO) and Personal Safety Intervention Orders (PSIO).
- FVIO’s are designed to protect individuals who are experiencing violence from a family member, partner or ex partner. Family violence can include physical, emotional, sexual or financial abuse.
- A PSIO is an order designed to protect individuals who are experiencing harassment, stalking or threatening behaviour from someone who is not a family member.
Both types of intervention orders can include conditions that restrict the behaviour of the person the order is against, such as prohibiting them from contracting the protected person, entering their home, workplace or other specified places, and possessing weapons. Breaching an intervention order is a criminal offense and can result in the person being arrested and charged.
How to get an intervention order?
To apply for an intervention order, you have to complete the application form which can either be done online or at your local Magistrates Court. In your application you will be required to provide a variety of details including information about yourself, the person you are seeking the order against, incident details and what conditions you believe are required for your protection.
Prior to obtaining an order, it is important to gather any evidence including photos, videos, emails, text messages and other documentation that supports your claim. You may be required to show this later at court to prove you have a valid reason to seek an order.
Once you have submitted your application, a hearing will be scheduled. The person you are seeking an order against will be served by police of your application and any interim intervention order if applicable and the hearing date. At this hearing, a magistrate will read your statement and decide whether there is ground to issue an intervention order.
Do I need a lawyer when applying for an intervention order?
Whilst there is no requirement to have a lawyer when applying for an intervention order, having a lawyer can be helpful to provide you with advice and assistance, especially if any issues or complexities arise in the proceedings.
Do I have to attend the determination hearing?
Whether you have to go to your hearing when applying for an intervention order depends on the specific circumstances of the case. If the police apply for an intervention order on your behalf, or you have engaged a lawyer, they will tell you whether or not you will be required to attend. However, if you have applied for the intervention order yourself, you will be required to attend.
Does an intervention order cost money?
There are no fees for applying for an intervention order. However, if you choose to engage a lawyer to act on your behalf, you will have to pay their associated costs.
In some cases the Magistrates’ Court may order the person the intervention order is against to pay the protected person’s legal costs if they are successful in obtaining the order. This may include the cost of seeking advice, as well as any other expenses incurred as a result of the proceedings.
How long does an Intervention Order Last?
An intervention order commonly lasts twelve months, however the magistrate may decide that longer is required depending on the case.