Breach of Apprehended Violence Orders

Pursuant to section 14(1) Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007, it is an offence to contravene a condition of an Apprehended Violence Orders (AVO). The offence is punishable by up to 2 years imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $5,500.

Conditions of AVOs

All AVOs have the mandatory conditions referred to as conditions 1. The condition states that the defendant must not do any of the following to the protected people, or anyone he/she/they have a domestic relationship with:

  1. assault or threaten <her/him/them>,
  2. stalk, harass or intimidate <her/him/them>, and
  3. deliberately or recklessly destroy or damage anything that belongs to protected people.

Further conditions can be added depending on the circumstances of the AVO application. These conditions may restrict the defendant in the following ways:

  • No longer allowed to reside at the family home,
  • Not allowed to contact the protected person except through the use of a lawyer,
  • Not allowed within a certain distance from the protected person/s residence, work or school,
  • Not allowed to be in the company of protected person for at least 12 hours after taking alcohol or drugs,
  • Not allowed to possess any firearms or prohibited weapons, or
  • Not allowed to try and locate the Protected Person.


In light of the Baxter family tragedy and recent community attitude to violence, particularly domestic violence, the Courts have started imposing harsher sentences for AVO and ADVO breaches. However, there may be many instances where the breach of an AVO warrant leniency from the Courts and having Pannu Lawyers on your side can greatly impact the outcome.

On 9 April 2020, our office appeared at Burwood Local Court for sentencing on behalf of a client who had contravened his ADVO conditions, namely approached and contacted the PINOP.

The client was particularly anxious as a conviction could have led to his termination at his employment which is extremely dauting given the current economy due to COVID-19.

Our office started negotiating with the Police at the earliest and amended the Police Facts Sheet to remove all the aggravating factors as alleged by the Police and asked the client to enrol in the ENGAGE program.

On sentencing, one of our criminal law specialists made strong submission on the objective seriousness of the offence, the subjective circumstances of the client and submitted that the matter should proceed without recording a conviction to which the Magistrate agreed.

In order to achieve this result, our office had started compiling subjective materials well in advance, materials such as:

  1. Apology letter from the client,
  2. Two character references attesting to the good character of the client,
  3. Letter from the Australian Red Cross, and
  4. Certificate of completion of ENGAGE program.

Another successful day for Pannu Lawyers and their client.


Pannu Lawyers extensively practice in Criminal Law and regularly appear at Courts throughout New South Wales. If your AVO matter is at Blacktown Local Court, we are conveniently located within a walking distance from the Backdown Local Court. Call our office on 02 9920 1787 to discuss your matter in a confidential manner.

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