Husband Disappeared - Received AVO Months Later?

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1 July 2014
This is going to be lengthy, sorry in advance.

My husband and I got married overseas in 2011, that was the first time we met face-to-face but we used to talk on msn/webcam before that.

Anyway, he got granted his spouse visa in October 2013 and when he finally came to Sydney, that's when I noticed a change in his personality towards me and my family (he had been living with my family and I). I am the sole supporter of my family since my mother suffers from cancer, my father is too ill to work and my siblings all go to school, but that's a different story. Anyway, I was saving up to move out and find a new home and start a married life.

When he came here he would always ask me for money and I gladly gave him whatever he wanted because I realised he was just buying calling cards for his family. Later when I got home from work, I saw him SMOKING in our room. I told him to not do that again as it is endangering not only my younger siblings but my mother as well. He got angry and slapped me. I was in shock. I was born in Australia and brought up here, I knew the rights women had here but I did not tell anyone about this because I loved him and I thought every marriage has an argument, so I left it.

Few weeks later he was pressuring me to cover myself and not talk to my male co-workers. I work at a bank and the uniform is already set out for me, my manager is male and I tried explaining this to him but he had gotten angry. He was always complaining about me coming home late (at 7:30-8pm), this was because I work in North Sydney and it takes me a long time go and get home from work. I work Mon-Fri as I am the only one in the house working.

He asked me to find him a job (of course, he didn't want to come with us so we had to look around for him). We eventually found him a job as an assistant electrician but after a day he said he didn't want to go again because he was tired. We understood so we found him a job at Fantastic Furniture which he never responded to. It is clear now that he never wanted to support the marriage..

He had even told my sisters to cover up as well, always asking if they had male friends, etc. My sisters were shocked because not even our dad talks to us like that. He had somehow found a friend in Sydney, which doesn't make any sense. Every night he would go outside and talk on the phone (to what I thought was his family) but it turned out to be this 'friend'. He would get picked up by him and not return until hours later, seeming intoxicated. His eyes were very red and he smelled like alcohol. He would always argue and shout at me. He only did this when my dad wasn't home so I had nobody to defend me as we were all women in the house. There were numerous other situations but I wouldn't want to make this into great detail.

Long story short, he had a different personality and I was lied to and manipulated. Around November 2013, he packed up all his belongings, stealing my wedding ring (which I had been looking for the previous night) and left the house. He did this when nobody was home and he purposely left the front door wide open so anybody could walk in and take anything. We were searching everywhere for him. I tried calling him but his number was disconnected. After 48 hours I reported it to the police as a missing person. (I waited 48 hours because apparently you can't file a missing person before that time). I am extremely upset because he had been missing for a very long time.

Now this is where the now problem begins. Last week, I got a letter from the police station saying that I needed to come in and collect some court papers. I was genuinely confused. I picked up the papers. I was in shock because he was in MELBOURNE and he had made an AVO against me and is taking me to court for family violence. I have to attend court in Melbourne. I started shaking and I felt really faint. I asked the police officer what it meant and he said I'd have to attend the court and ask for legal aid.

Basically he had these made up accusations that apparently me and my family (my ill parents and younger siblings) had always bashed him to the point where he was bleeding, apparently he was doing all the housework and got treated as a slave, apparently we couldn't stop contacting him and threatening him, etc. The worst one was that apparently I had sent people after him in Melbourne and he got 'bashed' to the point where his head was bleeding and the attacker said they were sent by me and that they were looking for him for a very long time (I had absolutely NO idea he was residing there). He said that he went back to his home country but was ridiculed due to his situation that's why he came back to Melbourne. He didn't come to Sydney because he was 'afraid' of me and my family.

I do not know what to do. I had also recently found out that he had family friends in Melbourne who are currently helping him get a permanent visa.

He left me after about a month staying here. I paid thousands of dollars, even going through tribunal, I even lost my previous job so I could bring him here and finish his paperwork. Why would I do all these things and risk losing my job just so I could 'bash' him? Why would he wait all these months until now to send me this AVO?

I went to a NSW lawyer and she said he is being ridiculous if he thinks he is going to end up getting permanent residency visa. She also said that he is using a Family Apprehended Violence Order against me so he can get granted permanent visa. She told me to see a Victorian lawyer as she doesn't know the law there. I am really stressing about this situation. Even seeing a psychologist. I don't know what to do.. I've never been to court before, what am I expecting?

Any advice would be great.


Well-Known Member
25 April 2014
Perhaps call the Womens' Legal Service Victoria - they have a legal advice line and might be able to advise you on how to deal with the situation in Victoria:
a free and confidential Legal Advice Line for women in Victoria who need legal advice, information or referral – regardless of income or assets. We offer women the opportunity to speak confidentially with a female lawyer about legal issues arising from relationship breakdown and violence against women.

Phone 03 8622 0600 (for metropolitan callers) or 1800 133 302 (for country callers)

Hours of operation:
Monday 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Tuesday 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Wednesday 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Thursday 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm