AVO – what are the consequences?

If you receive a Final Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) you are not given a criminal record. The Police will keep a record of the AVO on their database. Breaching an AVO is a criminal offence, with serious consequences.

If the court makes a Final AVO, it may affect your:

  • ability to work with children
  • security licence
  • firearms licence

Ability to work with children

By law, employers need to do a pre-employment check on volunteers and people applying for jobs which involve children. This is called “The Working With Children Check”. A person who has been convicted of certain offences against children are restricted from child-related employment.

If a you are applying for a job that involves children and a Final AVO has been made against you which protects a child (where the AVO application was made by the police or another public official), your record will be considered by the employer. The record may affect your application for a job as you may be considered not eligible for child-related employment or volunteer work.

Firearms licence

If a Final AVO is made and you have any firearms you should immediately surrender them to the police. In some cases the police may seize any firearms found in your residence (even if they are not yours) as soon as a Provisional or Interim AVO is made.

If you have a firearms licence it will be automatically suspended if a Provisional or Interim AVO is made, and automatically cancelled if a Final AVO is made. You will not be able to apply for a new firearms licence until 10 years after the date the Final AVO ends. You will also need to demonstrate that you are a ‘fit and proper person’ to have a firearms licence when you reapply for your firearms licence.

However, if the court revokes the AVO or the application for the AVO is withdrawn, or a provisional or interim AVO is no longer in force, your firearms lience will not be suspended.

Security licence

An AVO may affect you if you have, or want to apply for, a security licence. If the licence is a Class 1F or P1F (a licence which allows you to carry a firearm), you may not be able to work under that licence, because your firearms licence will have been suspended or cancelled.

A security licence may also be cancelled, or an application for a security licence rejected, if an AVO is made against you and if the Commissioner of Police believes that you are not a ‘fit and proper person’ to hold a security licence.

If you breach an AVO and you are found guilty of that breach, your security licence may be cancelled, or your application for a security licence rejected, particularly if the breach involves assault, stalking or intimidation.

If you have been charged with an offence, or are seeking further information on a Criminal or Traffic legal matter, call North Shore Criminal Law on (02) 9955 2298 or our 24 hour Emergency Service on 0400 44 64 24.