Consequences of an AVO

There are many myths and misconceptions about the consequences of an AVO. In this section, you will find information to help you to understand what potential consequences may flow from having an AVO against you.

Will I have a criminal record?

An AVO is not a criminal conviction. This means that if an AVO is made against you, it will not appear on your criminal record. It is often thought that this means that an AVO will not affect your employment prospects. This is not necessarily true.

Effects on Employment?

AVO's can affect employment prospects in at least two ways:

  1. If you apply for a position in child related employment, a prospective employer must do a "working with children" check. This check will show up any final AVO which is made for the protection of a child. This means that if you are planning a career in any work that involves contact with children, an AVO can potentially limit your career prospects. IN some cases, even those who work with children in a voluntary capacity need to undergo a working with children check.
  2. A person who has an AVO against them, cannot have a firearms license while the AVO is in force and for 10 years after it is finishes. This means that if you have an AVO against you, your employment prospects in the security industry may be affected. Equally, if you work on a farm and need a firearm to carry out your work, an AVO will prevent you from carrying out that work.

Family / Relationship Dynamics

Another practical consequence of an AVO is that it can make it difficult to continue a normal relationship with the person (or people) who are protected under the AVO. Depending on the precise terms of the AVO it may be possible for you to continue to have contact with, or even live with, the Protected Persons.

However, it will be a criminal offence for you to intimidate, harass or even "interfere with" the Protected Person(s). In practice this can make it very difficult to resume a normal relationship with the Protected Person(s). In effect, you may find yourself "walking on egg shells" for the duration of the AVO to make sure that you do not breach it. The fact that the AVO was taken out in the first place suggests that the relationship may be tense as it is and so it may be dangerous to continue to have regular contact with the Protected Person even if the formal orders do not prevent it.


The information presented on this website has been provided by Armstong Legal. The pages on this website are not a substitute for legal or other professional advice. Accessing or obtaining information from this website does not create a client-lawyer relationship.