Family violence support
Throughout your case, we can help minimise your contact with a person who has subjected you to personal or family violence. We do this by:
- keeping your contact details confidential
- sending (serving) a copy of your application on your behalf to the person who subjected you to violence, if you ask us to
- arranging for you to appear at your hearing by telephone rather than in person
How a family violence support worker can help
Our family violence support worker can:
- help you understand the VCAT process
- help you complete an application form and send (serve) a copy of your application to the person who subjected you to violence (if you ask us to)
- connect you to other services for ongoing support
- in some circumstances, support you during the VCAT hearing and provide remote witness facilities.
If your case goes to a hearing, a family violence support worker will work with you to ensure your safety at VCAT. They can attend the hearing with you for support but they must not speak for you or influence the decision. If you need legal advice or someone to speak on your behalf (represent you), these organisations can help:
Family Violence Response
Outside business hours, call Safe Steps Family Violence Response on 1800 015 188 – available any time of the night or day, 24/7.
You can also check their website: Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre.
Changing your rental agreement or other orders because of personal or family violence
If you are affected by personal or family violence, you can apply to us to change a residential rental agreement or to make other decisions about, for example, a bond, repairs or compensation. See our Renting and intervention orders guide.
Residential tenancy cases
If you are experiencing (or have experienced) personal or family violence and are applying about a rental property, we automatically organise for you to appear in a hearing via phone conference for your safety.
You can ask to appear via video conference instead by contacting our family violence support worker.
All other cases
If you are concerned that a person named in your application may be a security risk at the hearing or you want to appear at the hearing by phone or from another place (known as a 'remote witness facility') for security reasons, complete the Security request form and submit it to us with your application.
Tell us if you are aware of a personal or family violence issue
If you are aware of a personal or family violence issue, tell the family violence support worker. They will work with the person at risk to ensure safety at the hearing and access to justice.