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Common terms used at court

Chamber Service

The Chamber Service operates at Local Courts and can help prepare AVO applications for people who wish to make a private application.

Consent

Sometimes the defendant will agree to an AVO being made against him/her. In this case, the matter does not have to go to a hearing at a later date. The defendant may consent without admissions which means that he/she agrees to the order but doesn’t necessarily agree to the facts in the AVO application.

Court list

This is the list of cases being heard by the court each day. Some courts have an AVO list day so that AVO matters are heard on the same day each week.

Cross-application

Sometimes a defendant in an AVO matter will apply for an AVO against the protected person. If this happens to you, contact your local Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service straight away or seek legal advice. Your local Service will be able to assist you to obtain legal representation.

Defendant

The person against whom you have an order.

Final order

This is the order made at the end of the court proceedings. It lasts as long as you need it and you do not have to return to court unless you need to change the conditions on the order or to extend it.

Interim order

This is an order that lasts until the next court date.

Magistrate

Magistrates decide whether or not to grant an AVO, which conditions should be included and for how long.  In court they are referred to as ‘Your Honour’.

Mention

This is the occasion when your case or matter is brought before the court. If the defendant does not consent to the AVO, it will go to a hearing on another day. You should attend court on every mention date.

Police prosecutor

Police prosecutors present information to the court on behalf of police, just as lawyers do on behalf of private applicants.

Private applications

These are applications for AVOs made by the person in need of protection. A lawyer may apply on the person’s behalf. Legal Aid is available for a lawyer to represent you at court, if you meet the Legal Aid means test.

Protected person

The person for whom the order is sought or made (you).

Provisional interim order (PIO)

A temporary order obtained by police in an emergency until your court date.