Family Violence Intervention Orders
A family violence intervention order (FVIO) is a legal order issued by a court that aims to protect you from further family violence.
There are a number of ways to obtain a family violence intervention order. You can make an application yourself by contacting the Magistrates’ Court or Children’s Court to obtain advice on a family violence intervention order (Civil Process).
For more information refer to the Magistrates' Court of Victoria .
Police Initiated Intervention Order
To determine what kind of family violence intervention order is required, investigators will assess the nature of the allegations to determine the most appropriate intervention order.
Family Violence Safety Notice
Investigators can apply for a family violence safety notice (FVSN) if you need immediate protection. A safety notice can protect you before an intervention order application is heard in court.
Only a police officer above the rank of sergeant can issue a family violence safety notice. A safety notice can make sure you and any children are safe from the perpetrator and assist to protect property from damage.
An investigator can apply for a family violence safety notice even if you do not want them to. If this occurs, the investigator will ensure the police employee perpetrator is notified that the application for the safety notice is the investigator’s decision.
Service of Family Violence Safety Notice
Once a family violence safety notice is issued, a police officer must serve a copy to the perpetrator and explain what the notice means. You will also get a copy.
A family violence safety notice is also a summons for the perpetrator to go to court and will have the time, date and location of the first court date.
The first court date must be within 14 days of the safety notice being served on the perpetrator.
How a Safety Notice Works
A family violence safety notice starts once it has been served on the police employee perpetrator by a police officer.
A safety notice has conditions (rules) to stop the police employee perpetrator from using family violence. They may include the same conditions as a court issued intervention order. If the perpetrator disobeys the conditions, any police officer can arrest them.
A safety notice continues until a magistrate decides:
- to make a family violence intervention order and it is served on the police employee perpetrator or,
- not to make a family violence intervention order.
Leaving the Family Home
To protect family members, the police can include a condition in the safety notice that the police employee perpetrator must leave the family home immediately, even if it is a police provided property. This means the police employee perpetrator must not live in, re-enter or visit the home until a magistrate decides what will happen next.
A referral can be made for a perpetrator to a community services provider for alternative accommodation if required. If the police employee perpetrator refuses to leave or returns to the family home, any police officer may arrest them. The police can also charge the police employee perpetrator with a criminal offence for breaching the conditions of the safety notice.
Reviewed 21 December 2021