A protection order is a court order which aims to prevent further domestic violence from being inflicted on the victim. The application with the court is in the nature of civil proceedings for which there is a lesser degree of evidence required. It is sufficient if the court believes that the applicant is telling the truth. A breach of the order is a criminal act and the violator can be imprisoned.
The application of the protection order tends to differ a little bit in every state and territory which has their own laws that outlines the policies being followed. However, there are similarities as to what kind of behaviour is covered, who can apply for the order and the processes in connection with the application.
Persons in a domestic relationship are protected from being inflicted with violence by their de facto partners or spouses. Other persons covered are the following:
The violent behaviour covered includes a wide range of abuse from sexual, psychological, mental, and physical. Destroying property, stalking the victim, killing or injuring the family pet, making threats, instilling fear, intimidation, blackmailing, and harassment are examples of the behaviours that will be prevented from happening again.
Northern Territory, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania recognize economic abuse as one of the basis for which a court will issue a protection order. The definition varies according to their laws but basically economic abuse is when a person is forced to give up his income or assets. Examples of economic abuse are: withholding money that is needed for the financial support of the household, disposing of property without valid reason and the consent of the victim, preventing the victim from being employed despite that additional income is badly needed by the family, or unreasonably preventing the victim from taking part in important financial decisions in the family.
The victim, the police or any authorized person can file an application with the Magistrates Court. The authorized person must have the written consent of the victim. There are instances when the victim is too afraid to file that is why the law allows the police or an authorized person to do it.
A form is found with the court which must be completely filled up about the details of how the violence was inflicted and how the victim wants to be protected.