What is family violence?

What is family violence?

What is family violence – Section 4AB(1) of the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) (the Act) defines family violence as “violent, threatening or other behaviour by a person that coerces or controls a member of the person’s family, or causes the family member to be fearful.”

Examples of behaviours that the Act considers as acts of family violence include, but are not limited to the following:

  • assault;
  • sexual assault or other sexually abusive behaviour;
  • stalking;
  • repeated derogatory taunts;
  • intentionally damaging or destroying of property;
  • intentionally causing death or injury to an animal;
  • unreasonably denying the family member financial autonomy that they would otherwise have had;
  • unreasonably withholding financial support needed to meet the reasonable living expenses of the family member, or their child at a time when they are entirely, or predominately dependent on the person’s financial support;
  • preventing the family member from making or keeping connections with family, friends or culture;
  • unlawfully depriving the family member, or any other member of their family their liberty.