Contravention – Penalties for Contravening a Court Order (Part 3) – Podcast Episode 83

Today on the Divorce Collective podcast our Senior Associate Dannielle Young will take you through the 3rd podcast in our contravention series which considers the penalties for contravening a Court Order. Before you file a contravention you need to think about the result you actually want. If a contravention has been found by the Court then there is an array of consequences that can be imposed on the parent that contravenes the Orders. 

What will happen and how the Court will treat the contravention is a matter for the Judicial Officer that is deciding the matter. 

There are a differentiation of sanctions depending on the severity of the matter and whether a reasonable excuse was found, these include: 

  1. The court can vary the original Order that was made and make new Orders. This can be done regardless of whether the Contravention Application was successful or not; 
  2. The Court can Order the parent/s to attend a program. This might be a post separation parenting program, counseling or the Court could even consider ordering the parties to attend a Dispute Resolution Conference. This is so they can try to work through the issues and come up with a new arrangement that works for the families themselves;  
  3. The Court can also require that the person who contravenes an Order to pay a bond which is a sum of money that is usually paid on a condition; and 
  4. The Courts can provide for Orders of make up time where time has been missed between a child and a parent due to a parent’s contravention of the Orders.

If the Applicant was not successful in making out their Contravention Application then the Court can and usually does make Orders for the Applicant to pay the Respondents costs for defending the Application. However, this can also happen in reverse, if the Applicant is successful then the Court can make an order for the Respondent to pay the Applicants costs.

In some more serious breaches the Court can impose a community services order, a fine or even a term of imprisonment. 

Want to know more? Tune in and listen as our Senior Associate Dannielle Young takes you through the penalties of a contravention in the latest installment of the Divorce Collective Podcast. 


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