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Domestic Violence and the Law - Update

There are considerable new legal developments around domestic violence to report this month.

Legal Aid Cross Examination Scheme

In March, the Family Law Act was amended to include s102NA. Victims have been and are being re-traumatised in the court system by self-represented perpetrators currently allowed to cross examine the victim in the court proceedings. This section 102NA provides for mandatory protections for alleged victims from alleged perpetrators and will ban direct cross examination certain circumstances. The Act will protect victims of family violence by requiring that cross examination must be conducted by a legal representative, either a privately retained lawyer