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How to Remove a DVO

If you are the respondent to a DVO in Queensland, also known as a Domestic Violence Protection Order, you are required to abide by each and every condition of that order and you risk committing a serious criminal offence if you don’t.

Sometimes, the conditions in a DVO mean that a respondent cannot live in their home or cannot contact or even go near a loved one or relative and this can be a significant burden to all parties concerned.

Whether you are the respondent, or an aggrieved party (being the person protected under the order) there are things you can do to have the DVO removed and this section of our website aims to explain how.

Can I Remove a DVO?

Whether or not you can remove a DVO depends, firstly, on whether you are the applicant (or whether the police made an application on your behalf) or whether you are a respondent to the order.

The ability to remove the order then rests upon what stage of the proceedings the matter is up to  – whether the order has been made permanent or if it is still a temporary protection order.

If the DVO is permanent, then the only way to remove it is to make an application, to a Magistrates Court, to vary the order and reduce its duration to, in effect, “0”. There is no power for a court to outright dismiss or remove a DVO once it is made permanent, but varying the duration so that it ends immediately is possible. Anybody who is a party to the DVO can apply for a variation any time it is in force (either the respondent, the aggrieved, the applicant or a named person may apply).

If you are the applicant, and the order is still a temporary one, you are entitled to withdraw your application and ask the Magistrates Court that the temporary order be dismissed. This is done by contacting the court registry where you filed your application and asking them to withdraw it. You will normally then be asked to appear in court to explain your desire to withdraw the application to a magistrate. You, of course, should not take this course if the order is necessary for your protection or the protection of a named person.

If you are not the applicant, because the police made an application for protection on your behalf, then you need to secure the agreement of police to withdraw the application and have the temporary order dismissed. This agreement is rarely given.

If you are the respondent to a temporary protection order, the only option you have to “remove” it (assuming the applicant or aggrieved do not withdraw their application) is to contest the order being made in a permanent form.

How do I get the Aggrieved to Remove a DVO?

In short, you can’t and you should not try to. Attempting to force, or convince, an aggrieved person to apply to a court to vary a permanent protection order risks committing a variety of potentially serious offences, not least of which is likely to be breaching condition of the order.

Far better than attempting to remove the DVO is to contest it being made right from the start. If this is not feasible in your situation, you should consult a lawyer experienced in Domestic Violence law to help you in relation to the order and to explore how, if possible, you can have the order varied.

For advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.

Michelle Makela

This article was written by Michelle Makela

Michelle has over 15 years experience in the legal industry, working across commercial litigation, criminal law, family law and estate planning.  Michelle has been involved in all practice areas of the firm and in her personal practice has had experience in litigation at all levels (State and Federal Industrial Tribunals, the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, Federal...

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