How the court decides - Interim FVROs

Logo for FRVO self-help guideThe magistrate may make an FVRO if it is satisfied that:

  • the Respondent has committed family violence against you and is likely to commit family violence against you in the future, or
  • you, or a person who has applied for an order for you, has reasonable grounds to fear that the Respondent will commit family violence against you.
What factors will the court consider?

The three most important factors are:

  • the need to make sure you are protected from family violence
  • the need to prevent behaviour that could reasonably be expected to cause you to fear that family violence will be committed against you, and
  • the need to ensure the wellbeing of children.
Video: The magistrate's role

Every magistrate is different. Talk to your nearest community legal service or other legal service provider about how your local court deals with FVRO applications.

What the court can do after hearing your evidence

At the end of the first hearing, the court has 3 options.

1.  Make an interim FVRO

This is the starting point for getting a final FVRO. Once you have an interim FVRO, there are more steps before you can get a final FVRO.  

The interim FVRO will only come into force (start) when the police have served a copy of the interim FVRO on the Respondent. 

The interim FVRO cannot be enforced unless the Respondent has been served.
2.  Set another hearing without making an interim FVRO

If the court does not make an interim FVRO and your case has not been dismissed, it will go to another hearing. The Respondent will get a summons to come to court for the hearing. The magistrate will hear from both of you to decide whether or not to make a final FVRO.

You will not have the protection of an interim FVRO during this time and you cannot appeal the court's decision to not make an interim FVRO.

3.  Dismiss your application

The magistrate can dismiss your application if they think the grounds for a restraining order are not met.

If the magistrate is not going to make an interim FVRO, and you don't want to go to another hearing (because you don't want the Respondent to know you are trying to get an FVRO), you can tell the magistrate you don't want to continue with your application. The magistrate will dismiss your application.

You can apply for a new interim FVRO if there is a new incident of family violence.


The information displayed on this page is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia aims to provide information that is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided on this page or incorporated into it by reference.