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Respondent support

Being notified of a family violence intervention order application is serious. There are range of agencies and people who can provide support.

Safety and security

Every person will go through a security screening process when entering a court building. This is done to seize prohibited items that might cause injury to another person. Court security officers are also present to help maintain safety and security in and around court buildings.

You will be able to recognise them by their uniform and identity cards.

Go to the safety and security page for more information. 

Family violence practitioners

Respondent practitioners can provide information about the court and intervention order process. They can also refer you to a range of support programs and support agencies.

Approach the registry counter at the Magistrates’ Court you are attending to see if a respondent practitioner is available.

Go to the Aboriginal and Tories Strait Islander page for information about Koori support services. 

Duty lawyers

Duty lawyers are available at most Magistrates’ Courts. They can provide legal advice about the intervention order application made against you. 

Duty lawyers can only help on the day of your hearing. If you cannot afford legal representation you may be able to receive help form Victoria Legal Aid. 

Go to the legal help page for more information.

Housing assistance

If you have been served with an application for a excluding you from your home, you may be eligible for emergency housing assistance.

Go to the Health and Human Services website for more information.


The Magistrates’ Court may be able to arrange an interpreter if you are a respondent in a family violence intervention order matter. 

Go to the interpreters page for more information.

Court Network

Court Network are volunteer workers located at most court locations. They can be identified by their pink lanyards and can:

  • provide information about the intervention order process
  • answer questions about how to fill in an intervention order application
  • provide support during court proceedings
  • assist with court support referrals.

Court Network can be contacted before your court date or after by calling 1800 571 239 or via the referral page on their website: Court Network Online Referral.

Court Network are unable to provide legal advice.

Support services

Legal services

Victoria Legal Aid
Services include: free legal information on matters such as family violence intervention orders, criminal offences, victims of crime
1300 792 387
Monday-Friday, 8am-6pm

Federation of Community Legal Centres
Services include: providing legal information, initial advice and in some cases, ongoing assistance
Find a CLC near you

Law Institute of Victoria
Services include: free phone and online service providing free referrals to lawyers across Victoria
Phone service: (03) 9607 9550; Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

Support for women

safe steps Family Violence Response Centre
Services include: safety planning, 24/7 family violence response phone line, emergency accommodation, pet accommodation
1800 015 188
Monday-Sunday, 24hrs

Berry Street Victoria
Services include: therapeutic program; foster, kinship and residential care services; educational and vocational programs
(03) 9429 9266

WIRE (Women’s Information and Referral Exchange Inc.)
Services include: free generalist information, support and referral service via phone, online chat, email and visit
1300 134 130
Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

Women’s Health West
Services for women in Melbourne’s western region include: crisis and short-term support to women and their children
(03) 9689 9588
Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

Support for men

Men’s Referral Service
Telephone counselling, information and referral service for people including: men who are using controlling behaviour towards a partner or family member; women seeking information about men’s use of family violence
1300 766 491
Monday-Friday, 8am-9pm

MensLine Australia
Services for men with family and relationship concerns include: online and telephone counselling
1300 78 99 78

Support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

DJIRRA (Formerly known as ‘Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention Legal Service’)
Services include: telephone and face-to-face legal and non-legal support
(03) 9244 3333; Freecall 1800 105 303
Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

Support for CALD people

InTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence
Services include providing advice and assistance with: intervention orders, disputes in relation to the arrangements for the children, child protection, immigration matters
1800 755 988

Support for people with disability

Villamanta Legal Service 
Services on disability-related legal and justice issues include: free legal advice via telephone support
1800 041 111
Monday-Friday, 1pm-3pm

Support for LGBTIQ peoples

Thorne Harbour Health
Services include: counselling; men’s behaviour change program
(03) 9865 6700
Monday, 9am-7pm
Tuesday-Thursday, 9am-9pm
Friday, 9am-5pm

Support for children and young people

Services for young people 12-25 years old include: online and telephone support and counselling (for young people, their families and friends)
1800 650 890
Monday-Sunday, 9am-1am

Kids Help Line 
Services for children and young people 5-25 years old include: online and telephone support and counselling
1800 55 1800
Monday-Sunday, 24hrs

Support for the elderly

Senior Rights Victoria
Services for older people and people seeking support for them include: telephone support
1300 368 821
Monday-Friday, 10am-5pm

Other support


Children’s Court of Victoria

Family Law Courts

Victoria Police

Last updated on 19 Jan 2021
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