Representing Yourself

A question that our lawyers are commonly asked is "Should I represent myself at Court?" We believe that if you agreeing to an AVO there is no real need to have a lawyer to represent you. If you are agreeing to an order very little can go wrong if you represent yourself. You just need to be careful that you fully understand the conditions that you are agreeing to. .

However if you have a fear of public speaking or would prefer to have a lawyer represent you in Court to take the worry out of the Court process please do not hesitate to contact our criminal lawyers on
9261 4555.

If you intend to defend the making of an Apprehended Violence Order against you we recommend that you use a criminal lawyer who is experienced in Apprehended Violence Order matters and is good at cross-examination. If you are considering representing yourself at an AVO hearing you may want to consider the following:

  • It will normally be necessary for you to cross-examine the alleged victim and any other witnesses to the alleged incident(s). Normally, cross-examination involves questioning of witnesses so as to show that they are not being truthful or maybe mistaken. Normally people representing themselves do a poor job at this and the alleged victim and/or their witnesses are not discredited at all.
  • Cross-examination is not the same as simply telling your story and asking them to comment about that story.
  • If the application for the AVO has been taken out by a Police Officer the alleged victim will be represented by a Police Prosecutor. Normally Police Prosecutors are experienced Court advocates and skilled at cross-examination.
  • The rules of evidence apply to a hearing of the AVO. You will have to give evidence and lead evidence in a proper and admissible format. You will need to be able to argue legal objections if they are raised by the Prosecutor and or the Magistrate. You will have to lead evidence from any witnesses and cross-examine the alleged victim and/or their witnesses and make submissions as to why an AVO should not be made against you.

For these reasons we recommend that you engage a lawyer in this process. Our criminal lawyers have over 125 years experience in criminal law, appear in Court daily and are good at cross-examining people. Please call us on 9261 4555.


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.