Domestic Violence Orders

Picture of a lady in brown jumper siting at the breakfast table with her husband

Domestic Violence Order

A domestic violence order (DVO) is made by a magistrate in court and can protect you and others by making a person committing violence against you be of good behaviour and not commit domestic violence.

You can also ask for conditions to be added into the order, such as making it illegal for the violent person (the respondent) to come within a certain distance of where you (the aggrieved) live.

You can ask the police to apply to the court for a DVO. Otherwise, you can apply directly to the court yourself, or ask a lawyer, community/welfare worker, or friend or family member to apply for you.

A domestic violence order can stop someone:

  • approaching you at your home or work
  • staying in a home currently or previously shared, even if the house is owned or rented in their name
  • approaching your relatives or friends (if named in the order)
  • going to a child’s school or day care centre.

For urgent applications of Domestic Violence Orders

If you believe your safety is at risk, and the normal application process won’t protect you quickly enough, you can make an application for an urgent temporary protection order. You’ll go to court soon after you apply and it will be done before the respondent is told about your application. You will be given another date when you and the respondent will have to go to court to tell the magistrate about your situation. If you have a lawyer, they may be able to go to this court hearing for you.

​​​Urgent assistance required?

When to call Triple Zero (000):

  • if a crime is happening now
  • when a life is threatened
  • when the event is time critical, e.g. incidents with severe blood loss.

If you are speech or hearing impaired

Triple Zero (000) can be accessed via the National Relay Service on 106.

If there is no immediate emergency, but you need help

If the crime is not happening now, or the incident is not life threatening or there is little likelihood of the suspected offenders still being in the area, we ask you to consider phoning Policelink on 131 444 for non-urgent assistance.

Policelink 131 444 is an easy to remember number, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to contact police to report non-urgent incidents or make general enquiries. Professionally trained QPS Client Service Officers will respond to your call from the purpose built Policelink Contact Centre in south-east Queensland.

For non-urgent applications

After you’ve submitted your application, you will be given a date to go to court. The date and a copy of your application will be given to the respondent. The respondent can choose to agree to a domestic violence order being made, oppose your application or ask for another court date to give them time to get legal advice. If they disagree, another court date will be made for a hearing.

What if the order is broken?

You should call the police immediately if the respondent breaks the conditions of the domestic violence order. The police will investigate and if it can be proved the order was broken, the respondent will be charged with breaching the domestic violence order, which is a criminal offence.

What do to if an DVO has been made against you:

If you do not appear in court:

The court may make a domestic violence order in your absence.

If you do appear in court you can:

Option 1

Agree with the making of the domestic violence order. You can tell the magistrate you consent to (or do not oppose) a domestic violence order being made or varied. You can do this even if you do not admit to any or all of the particulars/allegations of the application. The magistrate will then make a two year domestic violence order.

Option 2

If you have not had time to get legal advice you can ask for an adjournment to another date. The magistrate may make a temporary protection order. On the adjourned date you can then advise the court whether you agree or disagree with a domestic violence order being made.

Option 3

If you disagree with the domestic violence order being made, tell the magistrate and a hearing date will be set. On the hearing date you can give evidence about why a domestic violence order should not be made, and bring along any witnesses or evidence you wish to rely on.

It is best to seek legal advice immediately after being notified of a DVO application, for more information on available options contact Legal Aid Qld:

Phone: 1300 651 188


Domestic Violence Protection Order—information for respondents