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Domestic and family violence and your visa

We can support victims of domestic and family violence by assisting them to regularise their visa status.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​If you’re affected by domestic and family violence​, you’re not alone. There is support available, regardless of your visa status.

​In an emergency

You should not hesitate to call emergency services if:

  • you, or someone else, is injured and need urgent medical attention
  • your life, or the life of a family member, is threatened.

Remember in an emergency or life threatening situation, call the police on 000​.

​​​​​​​Getting a protection ​order​​

If you are experiencing domestic and family violence you can apply for a protection order.

Each State and Territory will have specific laws for the making of protection orders. Protection orders made in a specific State or Territory are nationally recognised.

The type of protection order you apply for depends on which State and Territory you are in and may be called a Domestic Violence Order, Family Violence Order, Restraint Order, Personal Protection Order, Intervention Order, Apprehended Violence Order or Family Violence Intervention Order.​​

If you are not in a life-threatening emergency, you can ask the police or your local court about getting a protection order to protect yourself and your family.

Domestic and family violence service providers

There are organisations to help you with counselling, support and advice.

Counselling services and helplines can help you identify what you can do and find the right services or support for you. You don’t have to give your name or any other identifying information, so you can choose to remain anonymous, or to use a fake name. How much information you give is up to you. 

Legal services can provide you with assistance on family court, police and immigration matters. Depending on your financial circumstances and the details of your case, you may be entitled to public funding (also known as legal aid).

Service providers can provide you with assistance with housing, finances, food and medical needs. A list of national and State and Territory providers is provided below.

For free interpreter services, see the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National).

For information on Australia’s laws regarding domestic and family violence, sexual assault and forced marriage, and a woman’s right to safety, see the Department of Social Services' Family Safety Pack.

For information about services and support in Australia in many languages, see Beginning a life in Australia.

National support services

Most helplines are free from a landline, payphone and most mobile phones.

You should also know that the phone number will still appear on your phone bill. This means that anyone who can see your phone bill will be able to see that a call was made to the number.

We recommend using any website in private browsing mode where possible. If not, you should clear your browsing history. 

For​​ information​ on ​staying safe online, see online security and our website​.

National support services
ServiceContact details


National domestic, family violence and sexual assault counselling service

  • Website: 1800RESPECT
  • Phone: 1800 737 732 (24 hours, 7 days)​


Counselling and crisis support service

  • Website: Lifeline
  • Phone: 13 11 44 (24 hours, 7 days)

Family Violence Law Help

Legal information and assistance

Family Relationship Advice

Telephone service that helps families affected by relationship or separation issues

Kids Helpline

Free counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25

Multicultural Service Officers

Help migrant and refugee communities connect with Services Australia (Centrelink and Medicare)

Information in your language

MensLine Australia

Specialist help to people affected by family and domestic violence

Men’s Referral Service

Free phone counselling, information and referral service to help men to stop using violence

Australian Red Cross

The Australian Red Cross Family and Domestic Violence Financial Assistance program is available for people who are on temporary visas, or with uncertain visa status, living in Australia.

Uniting Care

The Escaping Violence Payment (EVP) program is available for Australian citizens, permanent residents or holders of a protected special category visa living in Australia to access financial assistance to help them leave a violent relationship.

My Blue Sky

Free legal advice and support for people experiencing forced marriage and other forms of modern slavery in Australia.

  • ​Website: My Blue Sky
  • Phone: 02 9514 8115 (Mon-Fri 9.00am to 5.00pm, Sydney time)

State and Territo​​ry supp​ort services

Australian Capital Territory support services
ServiceContact details
ACT Policing
Victims Support ACT
Domestic Violence Crisis Service
Women's Legal Centre ACT
Legal Aid ACT
  • Website: Legal Aid ACT
  • Phone: 1300 654 314 (Mon-Thurs 8.30am to 7pm & Fri 8.30am to 5.00pm)
Beryl Women Inc

Northern Territory support services
ServiceContact details
Northern Territory Police Force
Victims Support
Sexual Assault Referral Centres
  • Website: Sexual Assault Referral Centres
  • Phone: (08) 8922 6472 (24 hours, 7 days) or:
    • Darwin: 08 8922 6472
    • Katherine: 08 8973 8524​
    • Tennant Creek: 08 8962 4361
    • Alice Springs: 08 8955 4500
Darwin Domestic Violence Counselling Service
Central Australian Women's Legal Service (CAWLS)
  • Website: CAWLS
  • Call: 1800 684 055 (Mon-Fri 8.30am to 5.00pm)
Katherine Women's Information and Legal Service (KWILS)
  • Website: WKILS
  • Call: 1800 620 108
Top End Women's Legal Service (TEWLS)
  • Website: TEWLS
  • Call: 1800 234 441 (Mon-Fri 8.30am to 4.30pm)
Alice Springs – Women’s Shelter

Queensland support services
ServiceContact details
Queensland Police Service (QPS)
  • Website: QPS
  • Phone: 131 444 (24 hours, 7 days)
Victims Assist Queensland
Homelessness Hotline
Women’s Legal Services Queensland
Legal Aid Queensland
  • Website: Legal Aid
  • Phone: 1300 651 188 (Mon-Fri 8.30am to 4.30pm)
Refugee and Immigration Legal Service (RAILS)
  • Website: RAILS
  • Phone: (07) 3846 9300 (Mon-Fri 11.00am to 12.30pm and 1.00pm to 5.00pm)
DV Connect
  • Website: DV Connect
  • Phone: 1800 811 811 (24 hours, 7 days)

South Australia support services
ServiceContact details
South Australia Police
Victims of Crime
Domestic Violence Crisis Service
  • Phone: 1300 782 200 (24 hours, 7 days)
Women’s Legal Services South Australia (WLS)
  • Website: WLS
  • Phone: 08 8231 8929 (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Friday 10.00am to 4.00pm)
Legal Services Commission of South Australia
Women’s Safety Services SA (WSSSA)
  • Website: WSSSA
  • Phone: 1800 800 098