Recently introduced legislation heralds many new changes and protections in regards to domestic violence in Queensland.

Key features include an increased maximum penalty for repeated breaches of domestic violence orders. For first time breaches the maximum penalty is now three years with the possibility of five years jail for subsequent breaches.

Domestic violence victims will now automatically be special witnesses under the Evidence Act. This means witnesses gain increased access to orders and protections of the court for example the ability to give evidence via video tape and from a separate room.

Courts now also have the discretion to declare previous crimes on an offender’s record as domestic violence crimes. This retrospective approach was opposed by many legal groups but was passed nevertheless. The goal of this provision is said to allow for ‘signposting’ of criminal records so authorities and courts can identify patterns of behaviour or an escalation in violence.

An independent Family and Domestic Violence Death and Advisory Review Board will be established to identify systemic issues.

Robertson O’Gorman is experienced in Domestic Violence matters.

You may be suffering from domestic violence, in which case our solicitors will help you through the process of applying for a domestic violence order to protect yourself and your family. We will represent and support you at all stages of this process.

Alternatively, your life may be restricted by an order made against you. While being the respondent to an order is not a criminal offence, there can be very serious repercussions to simply consenting to an order which is made on unreasonable grounds. As such, you should seek legal advice when required to respond to an application for a domestic violence order.

Whether you are looking to apply for a domestic violence order, or seeking advice in responding to an order, we are here to help. Our solicitors are available in emergencies 24/7 on 3034 0000. If the matter is not an emergency, please call during business hours.