Domestic Violence Offences

‘Domestic violence’ is defined as being:

‘…behaviour by a person towards another person with whom the first person is in a relevant relationship that is physically, sexually, emotionally, psychologically or economically abusive, threatening, coercive or in any other way controls or dominates the second person and causes the second person to fear for the second person’s safety or wellbeing or that of someone else.’

In order to protect victims of domestic violence the court has the power to make orders which prohibits or compels the perpetrator from or to comply with certain conduct, for example, remaining away from the place of residence of the victim. The making of such an order is a civil order although breach of the order will attract criminal sanctions, including terms of imprisonment.

In 2016 and 2017 the issue of domestic violence received an enormous amount of media publicity and as a result amendments to the law were made to increase the level of protection to and safety of the victim. For example, the conduct that is captured by the definition of ‘domestic violence’ has expanded and the circumstances in which a protection order can be made have been broadened.

Cridland & Hua Lawyers can be engaged to represent either the ‘aggrieved’ (the person who is seeking the protection of an order) or the ‘respondent’ (the person against whom an order is being sought).

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