What to Expect Legally – The Process of Filing for a Family Violence Restraining Order

by | Mar 8, 2024

In Western Australia, seeking protection from family violence through a Family Violence Restraining Order (FVRO) is a crucial legal recourse for many who have suffered from, or are threatened with, family violence.

At Genuine Legal WA, we practise daily in the area of family violence and restraining orders. We are therefore well placed to provide comprehensive guidance on the legal process of filing for an FVRO, tailored to those seeking assistance with family safety.

Seeking protection through a Family Violence Restraining Order (FVRO) in Western Australia involves understanding legal criteria, documenting evidence, filing a lawful application, attending court hearings and accessing support services for long-term safety planning. Seek specialist assistance for your FVRO process.

There is more to this topic: from understanding the criteria involved in filing to navigating court hearings and accessing support services. We will guide you through the basic process here. For more assistance with your particular case, we offer our experienced guidance every step of the way.

Understanding Family Violence Restraining Orders

First, here’s a brief understanding of the definition, purpose and criteria behind a family violence restraining order.

Definition and Purpose

In Western Australia, Family Violence Restraining Orders (FVROs) are legal documents issued by the court to protect individuals and their families from domestic violence.

Family violence encompasses various forms of abuse, including physical, emotional, psychological, sexual and financial abuse, as well as general controlling behaviours.

We advocate for FVROs, as they serve the crucial purpose of providing immediate protection and preventing further harm to victims and their children.

Legal Criteria for Filing

In short, to obtain an FVRO, individuals must meet specific legal criteria established under Western Australian Law.

These criteria typically include demonstrating a reasonable fear of family violence or having experienced past incidents of violence or intimidation.

Additionally (and importantly), the court will consider the safety and well-being of any children involved when determining whether to grant the order.

The Role of Genuine Legal WA in Your Journey

The following is some initial background on how Genuine Legal WA fits into the journey of obtaining an FVRO:

How Our Expertise Supports You

At Genuine Legal WA, we are Family Violence Restraining Order specialists, so we understand the complexities and sensitivities involved in seeking protection from family violence.

Our team of experienced legal professionals is dedicated to guiding you through every step of the process with compassion, expertise and unwavering support.

We prioritise your safety and well-being, ensuring that you receive the protection and assistance you need to navigate the legal system effectively.

The Initial Consultation: What to Bring and What to Expect

During your initial consultation with Genuine Legal WA, please bring any relevant documentation or evidence of the family violence you have experienced.

This may include medical records, police reports, photographs or video, witness statements or any other documentation that supports your case.

Our legal team will carefully assess your situation, provide personalised advice and explain the legal options available to you, empowering you to make informed decisions about your next steps.

Navigating the Legal Process

Below is a brief outline of how the legal process works in order to obtain a family violence restraining order:

A Step-by-Step Guide to Filing a Restraining Order

Here’s the step-by-step guide starting with, crucially, documentation and evidence:

Documentation and Evidence

Gathering documentation and evidence is a critical first step when filing for an FVRO. This evidence helps substantiate your claims of family violence and helps us to strengthen your case in court. Be sure to collect any relevant documents, such as medical records, police reports, text messages, emails or photos documenting injuries or property damage that we can review.

Filing the Application

Once you have gathered sufficient evidence, we can help you proceed to file a lawful application for an FVRO at your local Magistrates Court. The application typically includes details of the alleged family violence, any relevant history of violence and the names of the parties involved. At Genuine Legal WA, we can assist you in completing the application accurately and ensure that all necessary information is provided to the court.

After Filing: What Comes Next?

Now, we’ll outline what happens beyond your application to the courts:

Court Hearings and Orders

After the application has been filed, the court will schedule a hearing to consider your request for an FVRO. During the hearing, both parties will have the opportunity to present their case and provide evidence. If the court finds there are grounds for the order and that it is necessary to protect your safety and/or the safety of your children, it will issue the FVRO outlining the conditions and restrictions imposed on the respondent.

Enforcement and Compliance

Once the FVRO is granted, it’s essential to understand its terms and conditions fully. We can, of course, provide you with guidance on enforcing the order and what to do if the Respondent violates any of its provisions. We are committed to ensuring you receive the protection and support you need to maintain your safety and well-being and that of any children involved.

Additional Support Services

In addition to legal assistance, there are various support services available to individuals experiencing family violence.

These may include counselling services, shelters, crisis hotlines, and support groups.

We can connect you with these resources to ensure that you have access to the emotional, financial and practical support you need during this challenging time while we deal with your legal matter.

Long-term Safety Planning

Aside from the support services we mentioned, safety planning is another crucial aspect of protecting yourself and your family from further harm.

Our legal team is very experienced in this area and will direct you to resources to develop a comprehensive safety plan tailored to your specific circumstances.

Why Choose Genuine Legal WA

At Genuine Legal WA, we are committed to advocating for the rights and safety of individuals experiencing family violence.

Our Commitment to You

We understand the emotional and legal challenges you may face. That’s why we are dedicated to providing you with the support, guidance and representation you need to secure a favourable outcome.

Our compassionate approach, combined with our extensive legal expertise, sets us apart as trusted advocates for victims of family violence.

Testimonials and Success Stories

Don’t just take our word for it — read what our clients have to say about their experiences with us at Genuine Legal WA.

Our success stories speak to our commitment to achieving positive outcomes for our clients and our unwavering dedication to justice and advocacy. When you choose Genuine Legal WA, you can trust that you are in capable and caring hands every step of the way.

We are here to support you through every stage of the process, from the initial free one-hour consultation to enforcing the family violence restraining order.

Your safety and well-being are our top priorities and we will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the protection and support you deserve. Contact us for a discussion or to book your initial free one-hour consultation.