Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012
Domestic and family violence (DFV) occurs when one person in an intimate personal, family or informal care relationship uses violence or abuse to maintain power and control over the other person.
Broadly, under Queensland law, it includes behaviour that is physically, sexually, emotionally, psychologically or economically abusive, threatening, coercive or aimed at controlling or dominating another person through fear.
The Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012 (the Act) aims to maximise the safety, protection and wellbeing of people who fear or experience DFV and minimise disruption to their lives. The Act also aims to prevent or reduce DFV and the exposure of children to DFV, and to ensure people who commit DFV are held accountable for their actions.
In October 2016, the Queensland Parliament passed a range of amendments to the Act to better protect victims of DFV and their families, hold perpetrators to account for their actions and support the delivery of integrated service responses.
Read the Legislation explained - Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act 2012 booklet for a simple explanation of the Act, as well as information about seeking protection by applying for a protection order using this Act.
National Domestic Violence Order (DVO) Scheme
Since 25 November 2017, each state and territory has laws to improve the protection of DFV victims. DVOs issued in one state or territory will apply and be enforceable in all states and territories in Australia.
Seeking protection through a DVO
The Act provides protection to those people experiencing DFV by empowering police to take action to protect a person from domestic violence and by enabling a court to make a DVO. DVOs aim to prevent DFV occurring within a relevant relationship by restricting the behaviour of the person committing the abuse.
Find out how to get protection from DFV, including how to apply for a DVO.
Perpetrator intervention and approved providers and intervention programs
The Act is administered under the principle that people who commit DFV should be held accountable for their use of violence and, if possible, provided with an opportunity to change.
To support this principle, the Act includes provision for the court to make an intervention order for the respondent (perpetrator) when a DVO is being made or varied.
This intervention order will require the respondent to attend an approved provider for assessment of their suitability to participate in an approved intervention program and/or counselling.
Specific information about intervention orders can be found in sections 68 to 75 of the Act.