We have experience litigating and resolving many kinds of disputes including restraining orders.
If you are afraid that a person is likely to intimidate or offend you, or cause damage to property owned by you, then you may be able to get a restraining order against that person.
You may also be able to get a restraining order against a person who assaults or stalks you, or threatens to assault or stalk you.
What is a restraining order?
The legislation regulating restraining orders in Western Australia is the Restraining Orders Act 1997 (WA).
There are three different types of restraining orders. The appropriate restraining order for you will depend on the nature of the conduct and the relationship between you and the other person.
If you are afraid that a person is likely to intimidate or offend you, cause damage to property owned by you or in your possession, or behave in a manner that is likely to lead to a breach of the peace, then you may apply for a misconduct restraining order.
If a person has already committed an assault against you, caused injury to you, or stalked you, or threatened to do any of those things, then you may apply for a violence restraining order.
If a person who is a member of your family is violent, or threatens to be violent, towards you, causes you to be fearful, or coerces or controls you, then you may apply for a family violence restraining order. A member of your family may be, for example, a husband or wife, de facto or person in an intimate relationship, anyone who you are related to, or a parent or child.
How do I apply for a restraining order?
You may apply for a restraining order by filing an application in the Magistrates Court. If the person you are applying against is a child, then the application must be made to the Children’s Court.
What type of restrictions will apply?
The Court will consider the circumstances and apply restrictions that it believes are appropriate in your particular case. You should think about what conditions you want to ask for before attending a hearing.
Some common restrictions include a ban on the restrained person communicating with you in person or electronically, attending your workplace or place of education, attending the place that you live, coming within a certain distance from you, or contacting you on social media.
How long will the restraining order be in place?
A violence restraining order or family violence restraining order will remain in place for 2 years, or for the period stated in the order.
A misconduct restraining order or family violence restraining order will remain in place for 1 year, or for the period stated in the order.
What should I do if I’m served with a restraining order?
If you are served with any type of restraining order, then you may be asked to attend a hearing. It is important that you attend the hearing because it’s likely that a restraining order will be made against you if you don’t attend.
If you are served with a violence restraining order or a family violence restraining order, then the person who is seeking to restrain you may choose to attend a hearing without you and apply for an interim order. If an interim order is granted, you must respond within 21 days of being provided with the interim order. If you don’t respond within 21 days, then a final restraining order is likely to be made against you.
What happens if I breach a restraining order?
If you breach any type of restraining order, you may be arrested and receive a fine. If you breach a violence restraining order or a family violence restraining order, you may also be imprisoned for up to two years.
If you would like further information about how to apply for, or dispute, a restraining order, please contact us.