JJ Blog Content 2 MAR 2023

The Right To Ask Scheme: How Does It Work Against Domestic Violence

Under a new scheme set to be trialled in New South Wales, individuals who may be at risk of domestic violence can be alerted to their partner’s history of abusive behaviour. This initiative has the potential to provide critical information that could help prevent domestic violence and protect those who may be vulnerable.

What Is the Right to Ask Scheme?

The Right to Ask scheme is a valuable initiative that would enable NSW police to provide information about a person’s partner’s prior domestic or violence offences over the phone or through an online portal. The scheme would operate under strict privacy controls, and criminal penalties would apply for any misuse of the information. This service will be provided in multiple languages and facilitate referral to domestic violence support services where necessary.

According to NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet, the scheme is inspired by the UK’s Clare’s Law and aims to empower individuals at risk to make informed decisions based on the information provided. The UK’s Clare’s Law was named after Clare Wood, a victim of domestic violence who was murdered in 2009 by her former partner, a man whom the police knew to be violent.

“There are simply too many heartbreaking stories of women and men being seriously hurt or murdered in circumstances where the perpetrators had a history of prior domestic and violent criminal offences that they didn’t know about,” said Mr Perrottet.

“None of us want to see a loved one scarred by domestic violence and wishing they’d known their partner’s history sooner,” he said further.

“We cannot continue to have women being killed in our community so we need to have new approaches, new thinking and new policies to back up our record domestic violence support funding.

“This is not the only solution to the growing domestic violence issue facing our state and many communities across Australia but if it saves one life then it will have been worth it.”

The “Right to Ask” scheme is a critical step towards preventing domestic violence and protecting those at risk. It is essential to note that the scheme’s primary focus is to empower individuals by providing them with information that can help them make informed decisions. 

In 2016, NSW trialled a similar initiative known as the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS). Unfortunately, the pilot scheme had a low uptake and was subject to criticism.

The proposed Right to Ask Scheme addresses some of the shortcomings of the previous initiative. For instance, it will have a wider application across NSW and provide information on domestic and violence offences, not just convictions. The scheme is part of a range of commitments made by the Coalition and Labor party.

The Role of AVO Lawyers in Cases of Family Violence

The role of AVO lawyers in cases of family violence cannot be overstated. If a professional suspects that their client is experiencing family violence, they can refer them to an AVO lawyer or a domestic violence service. An AVO lawyer can help the victim obtain an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO), which is a legal document that orders the perpetrator of violence to stay away from the victim.

If an AVO is breached, it becomes a criminal offence, and the perpetrator can face legal penalties, including fines and imprisonment. In cases where the perpetrator has breached the AVO, an AVO lawyer can assist the victim in taking legal action to enforce the order.

AVO lawyers are trained to provide legal representation to victims of family violence. They can assist with the preparation of AVO applications, attend court hearings, and provide ongoing legal advice and support. AVO lawyers can also assist victims in obtaining other legal remedies such as Family Law Orders or Criminal Charges.

AVO lawyers can also assist victims in obtaining other legal remedies, such as Intervention Orders or Child Protection Orders. Intervention Orders are similar to AVOs, but they can be obtained by victims of non-domestic violence, such as workplace harassment or stalking. Child Protection Orders are legal orders that protect children from abuse or neglect, and they can be obtained by a parent or a relevant authority.

In addition to their legal expertise, AVO lawyers are trained to provide compassionate and supportive services to victims of family violence. They understand the complexities of domestic violence cases and are equipped to provide ongoing legal advice and support throughout the legal process.

The “Right to Ask” scheme is an important tool in the fight against domestic violence. It can help break the cycle of violence by identifying cases of family violence early on and providing the necessary support. 

If you are facing matters related to domestic violence or AVO matter, seeking the help of an AVO lawyer is an important step in protecting yourself and your loved ones. At Jackson John Defence Lawyers, we have the experience and expertise to guide you through the process and provide you with the best possible outcome.

Our team of AVO lawyers understands the complexities of these matters and has the knowledge and skills necessary to represent you effectively. We take a compassionate yet strategic approach to ensure your rights are protected and that you receive the support you need.

With our strong track record of success and reputation for professionalism, we are committed to providing exceptional service to our clients. You can trust us to fight for your rights and provide you with the best possible legal representation.

Don’t navigate these challenging situations alone. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can assist you with your domestic violence or AVO matter.