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QLD False Allegations and Domestic Violence Order - What to Do?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Anne22, 9 April 2016.

  1. Anne22

    Anne22 Active Member

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    Hi,

    I'm new to the forum and I've desperately been trying to find help and information about Domestic Violence Orders for my brother. Recently, his wife left him and took their two children with her (they are 2 and 6 months). She left a note full of hateful and false allegations against him and he has received a Domestic Violence Order from the Police claiming domestic violence, which is a complete pack of lies.S he has moved over 600 kms away and won't let him have any contact with his children whatsoever and has told him he won't see them again.

    He is obviously devastated and doesn't know why this is happening. He went to the first appointment at the magistrates court and a solicitor there advised him to accept it without admission and if he did he might be able to see his children.

    The magistrate told them to go to mediation to make a parental plan, which he was more than willing to do in the hopes that he could see his kids. His wife kept trying to stall the process and wouldn't agree to anything during the mediation except him seeing his kids once a month in a supervised contact centre.

    He has been to an interview at the contact centre and now has to wait for his wife to decide when he can have an appointment at the contact centre to see his kids for 2 hours whilst being supervised.

    I'm afraid that he's going to have some kind of breakdown if he doesn't get some help soon or something positive happens, so I'm trying to find out whatever I can to help. I'm in the UK at the moment, so I'm doing everything via email and phone and I feel useless because I can't help him.

    Everywhere he goes to get some help or advice they aren't interested as soon as a Domestic Violence Order is mentioned. The Domestic Violence Order isn't supposed to be a criminal matter, but he is being treated like he's a criminal when he's done nothing wrong.

    He is now going to say he doesn't accept the Domestic Violence Order because the only reason he was initially going to accept it without admission was because he thought he could see his kids - as this doesn't now seem likely, he is thinking that he's got nothing to lose anymore - and why should he accept it when he hasn't done anything?

    I can't believe that this can happen without any proof or evidence. It seems that everyone is just believing everything she says and ignoring everything he says. He thinks he can't get Legal Aid because he was working full time, but since this has happened, he has had to stop work as he's used up all his holiday going back and forth 600kms each time. He is also incapable of working due to the stress he's under.

    He has an appointment at a community legal centre, but it's not until the end of the month and he's been waiting for over 6 weeks already for that appointment.

    Does a Magistrate just rubber stamp the Domestic Violence Order? Or do they consider that the possibility that this is just a pack of lies which is for the purpose of keeping him away from his kids?

    Thank you in advance for any help or opinion anyone can offer.
     
  2. sammy01

    sammy01 Well-Known Member

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    Been there, done that. So my opinion...

    Accept AVO without admission. Why? It is easier. Yep, he could fight it, but to have any chance he is gonna need a solicitor. That is gonna cost money and he might not win. So the help I was given by my solicitor when I was in a very similar situation: Give the money to a solicitor specialising in family law for the purposes of getting access to the kids. Better than giving money to a criminal law solicitor to defend the AVO/ DVO.

    Read this:

    Family Matters - Issue 88 - Shared care time | Australian Institute of Family Studies
    Pay attention to the bit about court data.

    Now he has the mediation certificate. That is the first requirement to get to court. So he now needs to get to court. If he can't afford a solicitor, he can self-represent. Go to this site to get started

    Guide to using the Commonwealth Courts Portal - Family Court of Australia

    Now he is gonna have to make some tough decisions. His best bet is gonna be to move the 600km to the town where she has moved to. But let's not worry about that just yet.

    What else? Tell him to go see his GP. He can get some counselling to help with the stress. The dumbest thing I ever did was refuse help. I was s**t scared that if I saw a shrink ,it might contribute towards making the case that I'm crazy and I should not see the kids. He can get some free counselling.

    Find a men's support group. Better than counselling... Finding some blokes in a similar situation and sharing experiences helped me heaps. I learnt lots about how this mess works and I made some good mates.
     
  3. Anne22

    Anne22 Active Member

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    Hi sammy01,

    Thank you for replying and for your help. It's really helpful to hear from someone who has experience of this. I'll read through the information on the links and see if I can understand it all. At the moment, he is sticking to his decision to not accept the DVO, but he may change his mind.

    Some days he gives up and some days he feels like fighting back. He says he knows that he's not going to win and that the DVO is going to happen because she doesn't have to have any evidence or proof. It seems like they are just handed out to anyone who asks for one.

    I think he will have to represent himself when it goes to court. Do you know roughly how long it takes to get to court? I am hoping that if it goes to court that she will have to come up with some kind of evidence or proof or will they just believe her like they are doing with the DVO? Would a DVO go against him at court when it comes to seeing the children?

    He is already going to move to the town where she has moved to so that she can't say he's too far away to see the kids regularly.

    He's been to the GP because he can't sleep and keeps crying all the time,but they gave him tablets which gave him terrible nightmares and he said he feels like a zombie the next day and he can't focus on what he's doing, so I think that's put him off.

    I'll try to get him to go back and to go to counselling, but at the moment, I don't think he's up to it yet. This has all happened so suddenly - I think he's still a bit of shock about it all.
     
  4. Hope this helps

    Hope this helps Well-Known Member

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    You or no one else except your brother and partner knows what has really occurred. No, your brother should not if he has not committed any form of domestic violence against his partner or children or both should accept an AVO without admission.

    Anyone can easily place a Temp. AVO on their partner or family member. This is to keep the aggrieved person and whoever else's name is on the order safe and out of danger from the accused until a court hearing.

    I live in QLD and had an ex constantly place ' TEMP AVO's on me only to have them dismissed. He did this one after the other that the last time he was told if he places another Temp AVO on me, he will be placed in goal for false allegations, wasting the courts time, other charges including being malicious and vindictive. He had to pay for the cost of the court fees, all my solicitors fees and has never put another AVO on me again.

    This is extremely rar, the Judge said, including every solicitor and barrister I've come across as usually both persons have committed a form of domestic violence. Eg : calling their partner an idiot, but I had not done anything at all of this nature.

    A person can place a Temp AVO on another without the other person being in court or knowing it's happening, just get a knock on the door by two police and handed the Temp AVO and wait for the court date to arrive. Big shock! I even remember saying to the police ' you're joking! Is this a prank?', as I was palliative, baled-headed cancer patient, wearing a mask after just being dropped off from chemo and radiation treatment with my 10 yr old standing next to me and making the police wash their hands and wear masks, oncology head gear, aprons and gloves so they didn't give me any sickness as my ammune system was so low. The ex had turned up just beforehand with my 10 yr old saying to me, 'Here, have her. Hope you die quicker!' Knowing she had a cold and was sick but I would not turn her away irregardless how sick I was.

    Judges do not give out permanent 2 year AVO's easily. In fact, it's very rare and the perpetrators has to do something extremely serious towards another before they do otherwise the judge will either place a restraining order or Temp AVO on both people to keep away from each other and make another court time in 6 weeks or 6 months. Judges can include children in this.

    However, the mother can not say to the father ' you will never see your children again'. It's not up to her. Family court is where contact with children is sorted out and arranged. Family Court orders override AVO's but they are somewhat taken into account depending on the allegations and evidences, charges, etc.

    I live I Brisbane so I don't know where your brother lives if he has to drive 600 km away to the nearest legal centre. There are plenty of legal centres opened Monday to Friday including evenings. Legal aid will provide help regarding AVO's but you have to be earning lower than 23-26.000 pa. If they can't do it themselves, they will pay a solicitor $1500 to assist and stand up for you in court. He can obtain free advice from Caxton legal services in Brisbane City West. Sandbag Community Centre at Sandgate, Northside, Caboolture Magustrate and Sandgate Magistrate.

    Both courts have specialised people to help fill out, support you and advice you including what to expect in court, explain proceedings, phone numbers, help you lodge forms, etc. Both on the Northside of Brisbane. Nundah community centre on the Northside of Brisbane, Outreach at Toombul, Northside. Salvation Army legal service in Mt Gravatt. South side, other Legals within the city and west and East side including Logan , Springwood which are on the South side.

    Most churches and community centres everywhere provide legal advice, food, shelter, clothing, and all documents can be printed off, but a lit of support because it is major having an AVO or placing a permanent AVO on you let alone break up of marriage and not seeing your children. Relationship Australia in the north, south and city areas will help your brother cope, get through this all.

    If Judge has sent them to mediation and she doesn't show up but he does and it keeps happening then he will obtain a certificate from the Mediation Practioner stating he has been but the mother has not and solution can not be solved but this will take a year to 18 months. Depending how she is stalling for what reasons.

    However then it's off to court and as I said Judge determines if your brother sees his children via contact centre or puts in place practical means and fair means regarding contact of children depending on the interest, safety of the children.

    If the judge has stated your brother to see his children via contact centre, times will be worked out by the contact centre and their availability and not by the mother. Any one of the parents can say to each other worthless words of threats but it is the Judge who decides on contact times, how much, whether supervised centre or supervised by a friend or family member, or no supervision needed at all. Doesn't matter whether the mother decided to live in Timbucktoo- the judge will make all decisions based on evidence, reports, expert witnesses and advice put forth from them and their recommendation, and a lot more.

    The judge may even send both parents out with mediators and come back before the day is out and work something out if possible. I realise you are assisting your brother as much as possible and keep up the good work but remember the old saying- no one truely knows a person till they share a bed with them.

    Meaning no one knows what it's like to be married to anyone only the couple in the marriage. And people forget relationships are not just based on a house, caring for children, bringing in financial support but sex, hence sharing the bed , intimacy that isn't known by mothers , fathers, sisters, brothers or friends let alone children of a couple. Many things go on in marriages n intimate relationships.abd a lot goes on that a partner doesn't even know n they life with them
    24/ 7.
     
  5. Hope this helps

    Hope this helps Well-Known Member

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    Judges are not stupid! They deal with people wanting AVO's every day. Judges have heard everything. There has to be evidence otherwise no deal. Permanent 2 year AVOs are very serious and for a person to have this placed on them by a Judge is not easy so therefore your brother if he hasn't done anything extremely dangerous, to children or the mother, threatened their lives, abused them severely then he has every chance of not being placed on a 2 year AVO.

    He, too, can place an AVO on the mother if she has abused him, verbally, financially, physically, mentally, used the children to intimidate, manipulate or as a bargaining agent. First, obtain what domestic violence is and give it to your brother and you yourself read it. Your brother can fight this if he has not committed domestic violence or he can also prove the mother committed domestic violence on him as well which is very common.

    Tell him not to give up! He has as much chance as the mother in seeing his children if he hasn't done anything wrong to the children and equally so to the mother. The Judge will find out the truth. Plenty of free legal help and support for your brother. Can you tell me where he exactly lives seeming he lives 600 km from Brisbane and I may be able to supply info for your brother to not only help legally but, support him mentally, cope with this all, get some good into him and get some help for free to put him back on his feet and not to worry so much.

    Hope to hear from you
     
  6. Anne22

    Anne22 Active Member

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    Hi Hope this helps,

    Thanks for your reply. I don't want to say exactly where he lives in case his wife or any of her family happen to look on this forum, but it's on the central coast of Qld and she has moved to north Qld. I might have not made it clear, but I didn't mean that his nearest legal centre is 600 kms away, but unfortunately where he lives there is no help unlike in the Brisbane area, so he's got an appointment at the legal centre in the town where she has moved to and where he is moving to.

    He is also coming up against people's negative attitude when the DVO is mentioned because they are assuming he's some kind of criminal or something. Re: seeing the kids at the contact centre - the judge hasn't ordered this - it was worked out during the mediation.

    You said that the times when he can see his children will be worked out by the contact centre and their availability, this would be good, but, in this case, that's not happening. His wife is running the show - he keeps phoning the contact centre to ask when he can see his kids and they tell him that they have tried to contact her and are waiting for her to say when she can make it, so he is left waiting.

    I realise that I don't know the intimate details of the marriage, but I know my brothers character and I know there's no way on earth he would do any of the things she's accusing him of. She has told him she doesn't want him to be in the children's lives and she doesn't want him to be their father anymore.
    It seems to me that this was probably a scam from the start on her part to enable her to get a PR Visa to get to Australia and now she has what she wanted she doesn't need him anymore.

    It wouldn't be so bad if it was just her, but to bring children into it is totally wrong and she obviously doesn't care about her children or she would realise that they need to spend time with their father as well as with her.
     
  7. Anne22

    Anne22 Active Member

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    Hi hope this helps,
    I've just read your second post after I replied to you, so it's a bit out of sequence!
     
  8. Hope this helps

    Hope this helps Well-Known Member

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    Was mediation done by solicitors?
    Is there a court in the township?
     
  9. Hope this helps

    Hope this helps Well-Known Member

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    I just re read your first post and it's a bit upside down. Let's just back up here and I will, at least, state the general process. The mother applies to the court for a Temp AVO -domestic violence order against the father. Father is served these orders by the police. Does the AVO have only the mother's name as the aggrieved or have the children's names been included in the order as well?

    The Judge must have been convinced that the mother (maybe also children if named in the order) was unsafe and in danger to allow a temp AVO. Yes, temp AVOs require no proof, are easy to obtain. But a hearing is set down for the father to be in court to defend himself of the allegations at a later date.

    However, you state the father's solicitor has advised him to take a 2 yr AVO without admission so he can see his kids. Unless the father was abusive to the children too, no judge would prevent the father from having contact with his children. If he has committed domestic violence (which if a solicitor advised him to take the AVO without admission, then it is obvious the father has committed an act of domestic violence. Otherwise, the solicitor would be in court defending him.

    The father has gone to court and the Judge has not removed the Temp Order but has stated that the parents go to mediation to make a parenting plan so the father can see his children. The mother and father go to see a mediator and because the mother would only agree to the father seeing the children at a contact centre for 2 hours a month - the father instead of not agreeing nor allowing the matter to go back to court- agreed to the mothers stipulations.

    Did the father have a solicitor with him at the mediation? Now because the father has a temp AVO on him, has gone to court and the Judge has not removed the temp AVO but sent the parents off to Mediation proves the father can have contact - in a contact centre for 2 hours once a month which the father agreed to but is having trouble because the centre and the mother have not settled on a time n dates when the father can see his children.

    Then you state the father is not going to agree to the AVO without admission when he returns to court as he has not committed DV. This is what you have said and also that the mother has moved away 600 km from where he is located. All I can say is this - Before he goes back to court, he should write an affidavit stating and explaining he did not do the things he has been accused of. State what the mother has done to him if she has done anything at all in the way of domestic violence including false allegations.State he went to mediation and had no other choice but to agree with the mother who was being difficult and wants the judge to consider making orders so that he can see his children more as the children are entitled to see both parents and he wishes to be an active part in their lives as much as possible.

    State to the judge he can not financially afford to travel 600 km round trip and purpose they either meet half way or he will pick them up and she will pick the children up after visitations. ( whether this is at their residence, exchange and pick up at contact centre). When the father goes back to court, and he has not abused the children nor the mother then he should stand up and defend himself.

    Just as the mother will be defending herself via a lawyer. Hopefully, the father if he can not stand up himself in court, get a solicitor. As stated, there is nothing a person can do if someone has placed a temp AVO on a person. They just have to wait till court hearing. However, it sounds like the father judging by your post he has been to court and the solicitor has told him to accept an AVO without admission, instead of defending him and this is an indication of a very lazy solicitor or the father has committed domestic violence of a severe source because a Judge when it comes to a permanent 2 year AVO does not just stamp The formAnd be done with it. They will ask questions. Listen to both sides. Go through all accusations one by one.

    As for contact - unless the father has committed domestic violence against the children and / or committed a sexual violation of the children, then a judge will make it that the father can see his children equally as the mother. In my circumstances, the ex placed an AVO on me constantly one after the other and not once did a solicitor from Legal aid, any other solicitor or police tell me to take an AVO without admission. and the ex knew more than me and refused to pay CSA whilst I looked after our 4 children, nor pay anything, was more informed with his legal friends and brother and friends in the police force including he Queensland Police Commissioner and didn't stop but became worse after we separated.

    If your brother is on a temp AVO, he will have his time in Court n it's about time he stood up n defend himself.

    I suggest he obtain legal advice. It is confidential. as your brother really does need a solicitor. A judge is the only person who can state contact through a contact centre. This is law! Contact centres have a long waiting list, all parent must be watched at all times whilst with their children and the professional safety officers are right with them writing and record everything said between parent and child as well as how they spend their time, and a report is made.

    A minimum of 2 hours is allowed. Cameras everywhere and the parent and child/ children are not left alone at any one moment. There's a waiting list here in Brisbane and all over Australia, which means until there is a spot opened the other parent can not see their child/children. Also, a high cost per hour using contact centres.If the mother, in this case, is unavailable to be contacted by the centre this is suspicious as weekly, fortnightly, monthly whatever the court has set down for supervised contact, the centre and both parents must abide by.

    If either one does not then the contact centre can report this to the courts and the parent can go back to court confirming the lack of attendance of the mother and hasn't made the children available for contact. Your brother should defend and not admit anything but the truth in court. Even if he has committed domestic violence he should still defend and explain himself. But he will still have contact with his children if the judge deems it safe for them to do so.

    Domestic Violence is taken seriously here in Australia. In Queensland 1 in 3 women die because of DV and this is not including weekly numbers where a parent kills their children, their whole family or the whole family and themselves.Qld has the highest DV ratings in Australia and these are only based on situations that are reported. There is a no tolerance policy re: DV.

    1800Respect offer phone numbers and info ,counselling or just listen which may help your brother. Community centres in any township as well as the church organisation, salvos, St Vinnies, etc., offer free support and advice. In Townships, there are groups called 'men's shed' where men meet in a shed and talk about stuff, can speak to a counsellor, learn skills it just sit around and bond or shoot the breeze do to speak. Have your brother look for them. Beyond blue is very good and will assist your brother regarding depression, anger, anxiety, etc., or he can go to his GP and ask to see a psychologist for 10 free sessions to avoid a mental breakdown.

    Do convince him to get help and support to keep himself healthy mentally and maintain balance in his life. Tell him to Think of his kids,seek help as there are plenty of support including apps for phones, support on internet, etc., he is not alone!
     
  10. Anne22

    Anne22 Active Member

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    Hi, it wasn't his own solicitor who advised him to accept the DVO without admission, because he doesn't have a solicitor. It was a duty solicitor at the magistrates court who spoke to him the first time he went there. He told him to do that even if he hasn't done anything because it would be the quickest way for him to able to see his kids again, which is his main concern.

    The magistrate gave a temp DVO just including his wife and she told them to go to mediation to make a parenting plan. When they eventually went to the mediation they were in separate rooms and she won't budge from her stance of 2 hours in a contact centre once a month, so it wasn't a judge who ordered this. He realises that he's not going to get anywhere until he gets a chance to defend himself in court.
     

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