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Can a protected person breach an IVO?

In Victoria, as with many legal subjects, the topic of intervention orders often generates many questions. One area of potential confusion for many is the role and responsibilities of the protected person under an Intervention Order (IVO). Specifically, can a protected person breach the order designed to shield them?

Understanding the Purpose of an IVO

An Intervention Order (IVO) in Victoria safeguard individuals from potential harm or threats from another person. Its primary purposes include:

  • Safety Assurance: The foremost goal of an IVO is to protect the physical, emotional, and psychological well-being of the protected person, acting as a barrier against violence, harassment, or intimidation.
  • Deterrence: An IVO sets legal boundaries, serving as a warning to the respondent that breaches carry legal consequences.
  • Structured Separation: IVOs can create a formal distance between involved parties, often useful in high-tension situations or to break cycles of abuse.
  • Tailored Protection: The court will tailor IVOs to suit the unique needs of the protected person, whether it's no-contact stipulations or restrictions on visiting certain places or simply prohibiting family violence.

Understanding the essence of an IVO emphasises its pivotal role in the Victorian legal system, ensuring that individuals have a protective recourse against potential harm.

Can a Protected Person Breach an IVO?

In legal terms, the intervention order places conditions and prohibitions on the respondent, not the protected person. This means the protected person cannot "breach" the IVO in the same manner that the respondent can. For instance, if an IVO stipulates that the respondent must not contact the protected person, and yet the protected person initiates contact, the protected person is not legally in breach of the order. However, this could complicate matters if brought to court, as it might raise questions about the necessity and terms of the IVO.

Potential Implications for the Protected Person

Even though the protected person might not be in direct violation of the IVO, initiating contact or engaging in activities that contradict the spirit of the order could lead to complications. For instance any claims by the protected person that they continue to be in fear of the respondent will be undermined. The court will be less likely to accept any breach by the respondent in response has had a substantial impact on the protected person. It could also lead to application by the respondent to revoke the order or indeed could cause the respondent to make an application for an intervention order of their own against the protected person.

Seeking Legal Advice on IVOs

Understanding the nuances of intervention orders can be challenging for those unfamiliar with the legal system. This is where the role of expert legal advice becomes invaluable.

Expertise in IVOs: Legal professionals, especially criminal lawyers in Melbourne, possess extensive knowledge of intervention orders. They will have encountered numerous cases, each with unique circumstances, providing them with a broad spectrum of experience to draw from when advising clients.

Personalised Guidance: Every case surrounding intervention orders is distinct, and a generic approach will not be suitable. Lawyers offer tailored advice based on the specifics of your situation, ensuring you're making informed decisions appropriate to your circumstances.

Protection of Rights: Whether you're a protected person wondering about the boundaries of an IVO or a respondent aiming to understand the implications of breaching such an order, a lawyer will safeguard your rights. They'll ensure you're not inadvertently putting yourself in a legally precarious position.

Assistance in Court Proceedings: Should there be a need to apply for, modify, or challenge an intervention order in court, having legal representation can be crucial. Lawyers can articulate arguments, present evidence, and ensure the court understands the nuances of your situation.

Post-Order Counselling: After an IVO is in place, there might be lingering questions or concerns. Lawyers can guide clients through the post-order phase, ensuring they understand the long-term implications and any potential actions they might need to take.

Navigating the Complexities of Intervention Orders

Intervention orders in Victoria are critical in protecting individuals from potential harm. While the onus of adhering to the IVO conditions lies primarily with the respondent, the protected person should act in a manner that supports the order's intent. Any uncertainties or complexities should be addressed with the guidance of skilled criminal lawyers in Melbourne, ensuring both parties' rights and safety are considered by the court.

Can a protected person breach an IVO?

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Doyle's Guide First Tier Criminal Law firm (2020, 2021 and 2022).