How intervention orders work

How intervention orders work

There are two types of intervention orders that a magistrate can make. They are:

  • an interim order – a short-term order made until a magistrate can hear all the evidence and make a final decision
  • a final order – a longer-term order made if a magistrate believes a person needs protecting.

Interim and final orders have conditions, like rules, that a respondent must obey.

If the respondent disobeys the conditions on the order, the police can charge them with a criminal offence.

Interim orders

A magistrate can make an interim order if they believe a person is not safe and needs protecting immediately. It usually lasts until a magistrate can hear more evidence and decide whether to make a final order.

An interim order can be made without the respondent being at court or knowing about the order.

An interim order will usually last until the first hearing. The magistrate will then decide if the order should continue and for how long.

Final orders

A magistrate can make a final order if a respondent has either:

  • used family violence
  • assaulted, sexually assaulted, harassed, stalked, or threatened a person
  • damaged or interfered with a person's property

and the respondent is likely to do so again.

A magistrate can also make a final order if:

  • both sides agree (consent) to the order being made
  • the respondent has not opposed the order, for example, they did not turn up to the hearing.

See What can happen at an intervention order hearing.

Living with an intervention order

If the conditions of a family violence intervention order are difficult to live with, a protected family member or a respondent can apply to the court to change the conditions of the order.

For more information about living with an intervention order see:

Get help

Find out how you can get help with family violence.