Apprehended violence legislation in NSW has been amended.
The Stronger Communities Legislation Amendment (Domestic Violence) Act 2020 commenced on 5 March 2021. The amendments affect a number of legislative provisions relating to apprehended violence orders, applications and proceedings.
The By Lawyers Apprehended Violence Orders guide has been updated accordingly with all relevant amendments. These include:
- the definition of ‘intimidation’ in the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007 now includes, in certain circumstances, actual or threatened harm to an animal;
- a police officer may now issue a provisional AVO where there is a comparable interim or final order already in place and any such provisional order automatically becomes an application for a final order;
- an apprehended violence order imposed by the court on offenders who are also sentenced to imprisonment for domestic violence offences continues for two years after the term of imprisonment is completed, unless another period is specified by the court;
- a court may grant leave to make an application to vary or revoke an apprehended violence order which has an indefinite duration, if it is in the interests of justice to do so;
- certain parts of AVO proceedings in which a complainant gives evidence must be held in closed court, unless a court otherwise directs;
- domestic violence complainants now have the entitlement to give evidence using alternative arrangements to personal attendance, such as audiovisual link, in certain proceedings.
New standard order
There is also a consequential amendment arising from the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Amendment (Standard Orders) Regulation 2021 which commences on 27 March 2021. This amends the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Regulation 2019 to include in the standard orders a prohibition on harming any animals owned by, or in the possession of, the person in need of protection under an apprehended violence order.
In the course of making these amendments the AVO publication has also been reviewed by our author, with some minor enhancements made to the matter plan and commentary.
By Lawyers keeps you up to date!