Issued with a Police Protection Notice? What Should You Do?
Have you been in an alleged domestic violence situation? Have you been removed from your home by police and served with a police protection notice (PPN)? This can all be an incredibly overwhelming time for all parties, especially if children are involved.
When a domestic violence report has been made, police will always respond. Their first priority is to ensure the safety of the everyone in the household. By law, if police reasonably suspect domestic violence is occurring, they can enter and search a premises to undertake their investigation. This is to make sure that everyone is safe from any further harm and violence, and to find and gather evidence.
After investigation, if police are satisfied that domestic violence taken place, they can issue an on-the-spot Police Protection Notice (PPN) to the perpetrator of violence. This is a short-term order that remains in force until the matter is heard by a Magistrate. The PPN requires the perpetrator to be of good behaviour and not commit any further domestic violence against the aggrieved. It may also prevent them from contacting the aggrieved or coming within a certain distance of a premises for 24 hours.
If the aggrieved has been injured, police can charge the perpetrator of violence with a criminal offence as well as taking out a protection order.
What Happens Next?
When police apply for a protection order, the application will be assessed by a magistrate. The magistrate may make a temporary protection order to keep the aggrieved safe until a permanent protection order is issued.
The protection order will require that the perpetrator of violence does not commit any further domestic violence against the aggrieved. They will not be allowed to possess any weapons or a weapons licence for the duration of the order, and other conditions may also be imposed, depending on the specific situation.
- A protection order does not necessarily mean that a family will be divided or contact between the people involved will not be allowed.
- The perpetrator of violence will not receive a criminal record or be imprisoned when the protection order is made. However, if they breach the conditions of the order, they may be arrested and criminal charges may be laid.
- A PPN remains in place until a magistrate decides that a family violence intervention order is required or not, and if it is, it will then be served on the respondent.
Do I Need to Leave My Family Home?
To protect family members, the police can include a condition in the safety notice that the respondent must leave the family home immediately. If the terms of your PPN include this, then you must not live in, re-enter, or visit your home until a magistrate decides what will happen next.
If you have no alternative place to stay, the police will do their best to help find you emergency accommodation.
If you refuse to leave or return to the premises, the police can use reasonable force to remove you and possibly charge you with a criminal offence for breaching the safety notice.
Can I See My Children?
If you have been issued with a police protection notice, it may restrict your ability to contact or see your children, depending on the terms of the notice.
If you are prohibited from contacting or seeing your children, then it is vital that you comply with these terms. Failure to do so may result in further legal action being taken against you, and it may impact any future parenting agreements that are put in place.
However, if the PPN does not specifically prohibit contact with your children, then you may be able to see them as long as you comply with the other terms of the notice. It’s important to seek legal advice in this situation to ensure that you understand the conditions of the notice and how they apply to your situation.
Need More Advice? For An Experienced Family Lawyer Ringwood Families Trust Robert Wood and Associates
If you have found yourself served with a protection notice and would like further advice about your legal options, contact our team today. We are Melbourne solicitors who specialise in family and criminal matters. We are here to help you understand what may happen next and guide you through the process ensuring the best possible outcome for your specific situation. Call us today on 03 9762 3877 or send an online enquiry now.
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